Jennie Taer, DCNF
- San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin’s office couldn’t provide The Daily Caller News Foundation with a single example of a conviction for fentanyl dealing in 2021.
- Boudin’s office denied reports showing his office didn’t secure any of the convictions in 2021.
- “While it’s outrageous that San Francisco’s District Attorney is enabling drug dealers to sell deadly drugs to our children, it’s even more outrageous that Governor Gavin Newsom refuses to do anything about it,” California gubernatorial candidate Michael Shellenberger told TheDCNF.
The San Francisco district attorney’s office disputed reports it did not secure a single conviction for fentanyl dealing in 2021, but could not provide a single example of this when pressed by The Daily Caller News Foundation.
District Attorney Chesa Boudin’s office only dealt three convictions for “possession with intent to sell” in 2021, none of which involved fentanyl, according to The San Francisco Standard. Boudin’s office, however, told The Daily Caller News Foundation that the report is “inaccurate.” The city had a total of 477 accidental overdose deaths linked to fentanyl in 2021, and, in April, there were 49, according to preliminary data from the San Francisco Medical Examiner’s Office.
“We secure hundreds of convictions for narcotics cases while also following state law,” spokesperson Rachel Marshall told TheDCNF.
Despite Marshall’s claims, Boudin’s office failed to provide any examples of “possession with intent to sell” fentanyl convictions in 2021.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom also has a role in the lax prosecution of drug crimes, Michael Shellenberger, who is running for governor of the state as a self-described “no-party-preference candidate,” told TheDCNF.
In October 2021, Newsom ended mandatory minimum drug sentencing for nonviolent drug offenders.
“While it’s outrageous that San Francisco’s District Attorney is enabling drug dealers to sell deadly drugs to our children, it’s even more outrageous that Governor Gavin Newsom refuses to do anything about it,” Shellenberger said.
“The open-air drug markets are killing our most vulnerable citizens and destroying our cities. There is no excuse for their continued operation,” He added.
Shellenberger said he would bring the federal government, as well as the National Guard “to shut down the open-air drug markets across California.”
Newsom’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
The unacceptable toll continues: 49 people died in April in San Francisco from drug overdoses — 38 involving fentanyl — bringing the 2022 total to 192 deaths.
— Demian Bulwa (@demianbulwa) May 18, 2022
Boudin’s office is engaged in an ongoing effort to obtain convictions in fentanyl dealing cases, just not for the crime of dealing the drug, according to The San Francisco Standard. Defendants in 44 of the cases in a charge category including fentanyl dealing plead guilty to “accessory after the fact,” according to the report. In some cases there were fentanyl charges, but the person got hit with bigger felonies.
“We are losing over two people a day to drug overdoses, mostly to fentanyl, and mostly in the Tenderloin and SoMa. This is a public health emergency demanding a crisis level response, with massive urgency, coordination, and determination to confront this epidemic,” Supervisor Matt Haney said in the emergency declaration at the time.
The city allocated $160 million for a supportive housing program for the city’s homeless that fostered a breeding ground for drug use and violence, leading to many deaths, some caused by drugs. Between 2020 and 2021, 166 of the residents died, at least 9 of which were from drug overdoses, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
A push to recall Boudin is underway over many issues involving his soft-on-crime stance. San Francisco has experienced an uptick in crime, with burglaries and car thefts surging, since Boudin took office in 2020, according to the San Francisco Police Department’s crime data.
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