Valencia Street riot captured on video

Reader Steve pointed us toward these two videos captured surreptitiously during last night’s riot. I watched the full 20+ minutes and here’s what I know:

  • Whether Occupy identifies with these rioters or not, these rioters identify with Occupy. They reference the movement multiple times in their chants. But yeah, maybe it’s all a conspiracy to turn public sentiment against the legitimate peaceful protestors. Sure.
  • SF Weekly newspaper bins seem to be the makeshift barricade of choice for these rioters. They drag them into the street presumably to slow down authorities that might try to pursue. I’d say these bins should be banned, but SF Weekly is a very useful thing to have access to when you need something to sit on when it’s damp in the park.
  • It’s a major bummer to watch a guy smash the window of a defenseless art gallery.
  • Trying to reason with an angry mob is not very effective.

Videos and my timeline of notable sequences after the jump:


Hipsters encouraged to get the fuck out of San Francisco; yuppie scum encouraged to die

An art gallery, really?

The angry mob smashed up an art gallery. Really.

Fuck this shit

This is the street-level entrance to the brand-new 299 Valencia condo complex, which drew ire in the comments when we blogged about it a few weeks back, and whose promotional website copy (which also drew ire in the comments) was referenced in some local graffiti just last week.

[via @roseandsigil]

The calm after the storm

This is reader Brian’s friend Jessica “enjoying the resurrected Valencia swing after witnessing the pointless destruction.” Life on Valencia Street goes on.

Goodnight for now.

You’re having dinner at Locanda and all of a sudden a gang of thugs starts trying to smash the restaurant’s windows in with a big piece of metal

Reader Chris tells us about his night out:

I was at Locanda with my girlfriend, having dinner at the bar. What was one moment a quiet, boring Monday night suddenly turned pretty frightening when 3-4 assh*oles, like a pack of dogs, started trying to SMASH the windows of the restaurant. Mind you, it was packed and there were several 2 tops and 4 tops in harms way.

The morons responsible for this desperation were using what looked like a metal banister or something, in attempts to break through the window. That said, had the owners of Locanda not possessed the foresight to use heavy duty windows – which did not break or shatter – the folks sitting in the front, would have surely been hurt very badly.

[Photo by Alex English]

How exactly did paint bombs and anarchy signs escalate to smashed windows?

The above pair of shots are Farina, the below shot is Tartine Bakery, both are on 18th Street on the way from Dolores Park to Valencia Street. These attacks seem relatively low-key compared to some of the later stuff. It seems the crowd gathered in the park, prepared to launch some paint bombs, which they happily did for a couple blocks — before they got to Valencia and at some point decided to start smashing windows. I saw a lot of broken car window in the street right at 18th and Valencia, so I guess it didn’t take long.

UPDATE: Readers Christina and Steve were there. Christina first: “I was trapped in the middle of the riot while they threw paint on me and hit my friend with a chair from farina’s outside seating area. They smashed a window of a car and threw a flame inside trying to light it on fire.” And now Steve: “They threw tables around and broke some glass in front of Farina, then smashed an SUV window by the end of the block. Escalated pretty quickly and was moving at a very quick, intentional pace from the start.”

An “Early Strike”

The group of people who went around the neighborhood tonight smashing up local business storefronts were not involved with the Occupy movement, according to a source who is heavily active in the movement. He concedes that there easily could be overlap in terms of people who also go to Occupy rallies, or support the cause, but that this is not action that is generally acceptable with the vastly peaceful protesters.

The source points out that wording in this post, where the above image was found, implies Black Bloc tactics, frowned upon by many Occupy protesters, and does not specifically call itself Occupy. Though it appears on a site that seems to be affiliated with Occupy Oakland.

Let’s hope that the damage done tonight ends tonight and tomorrow’s peaceful actions will strengthen, rather than overshadow, the strike’s important messages.

Valencia Street ransackers attack poor unsuspecting plant

Congrats, fuckheads, you smashed an innocent little succulent.

[via @roseandsigil]

Eyewitness report: ‘Occupy fuckheads smash the shit out of the Mission’

From our pal Plumpy:

I was doing laundry on 14th & Valencia, when I walked out and there were about 100 Occupy kids in face masks and bandanas marching down the middle street without a cop in sight. I was waiting on the corner to see what was going on when they just started smashing windows. The Taca Airlines place on the corner and few businesses next to it got their windows obliterated, as well as the new condos across 14th. Eventually I noticed they were being followed by three cop cars, who apologized for being too outnumbered to do anything.

They headed up to Zeitgeist and stood outside, seeming to briefly ponder smashing the windows of a busy bar before thinking better of it. They headed down Duboce, smashing car windows, throwing trash in the street, and spray painting anything that seemed interesting. After breaking Brick & Mortar’s windows, the riot cops finally showed up on 14th & Mission, right outside my apartment.

The cops were shoving them back towards Duboce, but when they got there, a cop car ran into another private car. I think in the chaos the anarchist weirdos mostly got away into SOMA, presumably to wreak havoc on more undeserving people.

Then, I guess, a silver lining? A small coalition of neighbors and the local homeless joining together to pick everything back up. Yay, community? But ugh.

UPDATE: I’m pretty sure this was not an Occupy action. I apologize for the misleading headline. Plumpy wrote it in the heat of the moment, and I posted it in the heat of the moment. More on the origins of the demonstration here.