SFPD Chief Scott’s Statement On Charges Filed Against SFPD Officer 20-142
**Body-Worn Camera Footage Located on Bottom of Page**
Late yesterday afternoon, I learned that the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office filed multiple felony assault charges against SFPD Officer Terrance Stangel for his involvement in an October 6, 2019, use of force incident.
In this incident Officer Stangel and his partner responded to a 911 assault/battery in progress shortly after 9:00 p.m. Based on information the caller provided to the Department of Emergency Management (DEM) dispatcher, a Black male with dreadlocks, wearing a red and black jacket and black pants, “seemed to be choking out” a light complexion Black female. As the caller described it, the male was screaming “You **** I got you now ****.”
The officers arrived on scene and observed two persons matching the descriptions given by the caller. As Officer Stangel’s partner encountered the male – later identified as Mr. Dacari Spiers – to investigate the alleged crime, a struggle ensued between Mr. Spiers and the officer. Meanwhile, Mr. Spiers stated he did nothing wrong. During the struggle, Officer Stangel assisted in physically detaining Mr. Spiers and delivered baton strikes. Mr. Spears was handcuffed and later cited for a violation of California Penal Code Section 148 (a) (1) -obstructing, delaying a peace officer. It was later determined that Mr. Spiers sustained serious injuries during the incident.
The charges filed in this incident have caused high public interest. The San Francisco Police Department is committed to transparency and ensuring members of the public have access to accurate information and evidence to the extent that the law and the integrity of the investigation(s) allow. With that said, body-worn camera footage and the 911 audio recordings from this incident will be released and made available to the public on our website at www.sanfranciscopolice.org and on social media.
As I have said previously, I have confidence in our judicial system, and the criminal charges filed on Officer Stangel are now a matter for our judicial system to decide. Officer Stangel is presumed innocent unless proven guilty by a jury of his peers. During this process, we expect Officer Stangel to receive the same due process and fair treatment as any member of the public is entitled to.
While I steadfastly believe that officers should be held accountable when they violate the law, I feel just as strongly that there needs to be a balance in holding individuals accountable when they assault, physically attack, or unlawfully obstruct police officers in their duty to respond to public safety emergencies. Unfortunately, the job of protecting public safety and preserving order becomes exceedingly difficult when that balance is absent. Moreover, when there is an absence of balance, our officers deserve the support of the public, each other, our command staff, and me as the Chief of Police. To members of the SFPD, I fully support you.
During these difficult times in policing, the SFPD will continue to aspire to do our job professionally, keep our heads up, and move forward. We will also aspire to live up to our values in treating all people we encounter with dignity and respect, and continue to implement Collaborative Reform Initiative recommendations, which include improving our training and policies, being transparent, and ensuring the accountability that we expect of ourselves and that the public expects.
The SFPD and the involved officers have cooperated with the District Attorney’s Office in their criminal investigation.
The outcomes of the administrative investigations are pending adjudication.
To hear 911 call audio, police radio traffic and to view body-worn camera footage from this incident, use this link: https://vimeo.com/491401547