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San Francisco cops accused of ‘racial bias’ in arrest of armed suspect firing at them on bodycam

A group of San Francisco police officers are accused of “racial bias” in connection with the arrest of a mentally ill man in August 2022 who pulled out a realistic prop gun and fired multiple blank shots, resulting in a 53-minute standoff Someone who came out unscathed is hurt.

On August 6, 2022, police received a report of a stolen bicycle in the Mission District. Just before 8 a.m., two police officers spotted Jose Corvera, 52, riding another bike nearby and pushing his bike.The officers approached him to question him and found Corvera in the back of the car. He ran and crouched down holding what looked like a functioning firearm.

On Wednesday, the San Francisco Public Defender's Office announced a complaint against the police under California's Racial Justice Act, alleging they initiated the stop “for no apparent reason other than his race.”

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San Francisco police were investigating a stolen bicycle when they encountered Jose Corvera, then 51, riding two bicycles, and when they tried to question him, he allegedly pulled out a blank gun and crouched behind the vehicle. It is said that a tense stalemate continued for most of the time. 1 hour. (San Francisco Police Department)

“Corvera was unfairly singled out by the police based on his racial serotype, which is associated with Latino ethnicity, poverty, and the right to own personal property,” the filing alleges. “It is unreasonable and unwarranted to presume that his possession of two bicycles instead of one was connected to his criminal activity.”

WATCH: San Francisco police body camera shows man firing prop gun at officer

Corvera's lawyer argued it was “unlikely” that a white man with two bicycles could have been stopped in the upscale marina area.

Corvera went on trial last month on charges including weapons possession, threatening a police officer and resisting arrest. After the jury was hung, the judge declared a mistrial, according to the public defender's office. He was not charged with stealing the bicycle.

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Jose Corvera arrested on San Francisco sidewalk

When Jose Corvera finally dropped the weapon, police handcuffed him. At least 15 shots were fired during the incident, and no one was injured. (San Francisco Police Department)

A judge is expected to decide whether the request can proceed after a Dec. 13 hearing, which could allow Corvera to have his original charges dismissed and avoid a new trial. There is. If he loses, new legal proceedings are scheduled to begin on December 29. He is being held in the San Francisco County Jail on $50,000 bail.

Body camera footage shows police repeatedly yelling at Corvera to drop the weapon and warning passersby to back up.

Read court filings (mobile users here goes)

“If you don't drop that gun on the floor, you're going to get shot,” one of the officers yelled. “Put it on the floor!”

Corvera fired a hollow rifle during the standoff, and at least 17 police officers responded to the situation. Four of them fired at least 15 shots, according to court documents. However, they did not attack Corvera, only surrounding the car and building. They also called in tactical units and crisis negotiators.

During the standoff, officers crouched behind bulletproof shields can be heard telling each other where to store tourniquets in case of a “worst-case scenario.”

When Corvera finally threw down his gun, the gun went off one last time. Police officers arrived and handcuffed the man, and paramedics arrived to check for injuries.

San Francisco police body camera footage shows a man firing a prop gun at an officer

Responding officers took shelter behind a vehicle in a residential area after Jose Corvera, 52, allegedly crouched behind the vehicle and began firing blank shots without answering police questions. (San Francisco Police Department)

“Mr. Corvera was unfairly singled out by police based on racial stereotypes about Latinos, unhoused people, the right to own bicycles, etc.,” Deputy Public Defender Kathleen Nativida said in a statement Wednesday. ” he said. She added: “It is extremely unlikely that the police would have treated a white person the same way.”

San Francisco police officer holding a gun

The 53-minute standoff involved at least 17 San Francisco police officers, two tactical vehicles and a crisis negotiator. (San Francisco Police Department)

Nativida claimed that responding officers falsely assumed Corvera was a thief because he had two bicycles with him when they encountered him. The public defender's office also accused the officers of posing a danger to public safety by firing into a residential area.

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“It's important to call out racial bias, and we ask the court to give Mr. Corvera the opportunity to argue that race played a role in the police response,” San Francisco City Councilman Mano Raju said. Ta. “We also urge the District Attorney's Office to dismiss this case, as it is clear that a jury will again find the police's actions racially motivated and inappropriate.” I request it.”

City police did not respond to requests for comment. The long portion of the body camera video is Department Facebook account.

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