Captain Joseph Engler's Message
Residents, Merchants, and Visitors:
"What is it like to be a police officer in San Francisco?" I love being a police officer and there is no other place that I would seek to serve than the city of San Francisco. The merchants and residents give invaluable support to their police officers through their words and their deeds. Solutions are shared with the several community stakeholders. In our neighborhoods, the police are cared for, respected and nurtured by the community at-large. Officers want to help the residents with complex issues surrounding homelessness, the dumping of trash and waste and other criminal acts that detract from the shared enjoyment of the neighborhood. Having the opportunity to make a difference, on matters both big and small, makes serving as a police officer worthwhile and meaningful.
A perfect example of the symbiotic relationship between the police and community can be found at Civic Center Plaza. The children's playground maintained by Rec and Park, the Bi-Rite Market, the minisoccer fields, the internationally recognized "Lest We Forget" Holocaust art exhibit and the "Off the Grid" Friday afternoon food truck gathering all help to activate and attract people to use the park. The two Northern foot beat police officers work with Park Rangers and the Hunter's Point Family Ambassadors to create an atmosphere of safety. Creating an attractive space, enjoyed by families and tourists alike, is a deterrence to criminals.
While always seeking to highlight and emphasize the positive, police officer's know that they are the last line of defense against those choosing to live outside of societal norms. Recognizing that poverty, illiteracy and addiction contribute to most of the criminal conduct confronted upon our streets, Northern police officers always strive to use their police powers proportionately, ethically and without depriving the arrested of their dignity. The most rewarding moments are typically not from the arrests made, but rather, through the respect earned through a compassionate contact with a struggling person.
This City is easily one of the most diverse and well-educated in the world. The opportunity to learn, improve and make a difference as a police officer in San Francisco makes this a setting that attracts the best of the best. Your neighborhood police officers truly care and show up for work on a daily basis with a humble and positive spirit. It is my honor and privilege to serve as a police officer alongside such a fine group of men and women.