Everyone’s got something to prove, especially new police chiefs. They all want to make their mark, and to set themselves apart from the previous person in the job. SFPD chief Greg Suhr is no exception, with fewer locked doors, a pay cut, and the prospect of far more criminals behind bars all in the cards for our newest top cop.

According to SF Sheriff Michael Hennessey, there is an increase in arrests and individuals jailed when a new police chief assumes the role.

“What I do know is that when Chief… Gascón came to town, our jail population shot up by 400 people within 90 days because of new police initiatives and priorities,” Hennessey said at a recent budget hearing.

Will Suhr’s advent cause a similar spike? It’s too soon to tell, but we know one thing Suhr’s NOT locking up: his office. As Matier and Ross report, Suhr plans on leaving his office door unlocked at all times to make “everyone, including the general public…feel comfortable.” (I’m actually more comfortable with my doors locked, but I don’t carry a gun.)

Then again, maybe he doesn’t expect to have much to lose: the former captain of Bayview station is reportedly giving up his $20,000 cost-of-living increase and is prepared to take even less pay in the wake of the City’s $300 million deficit.

Suhr, Suhr, as a 4th generation San Franciscan, was making $186,000 annually as captain, and will be making $292,630 as chief.

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the author

Always in motion. April Siese writes about music, takes photos at shows, and even helps put them on behind the scenes as a stagehand. She's written everything from hard news to beauty features, as well as fiction and poetry. She most definitely likes pie.

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  • whynot?

    That’s very noble of Chief Suhr to do as his first gesture toward the SF deficit.
    Will he be helpful to persuade the SF POA to give up their bargained pay increases? How about SFPD’s collecting overtime in blocks of time regardless of how much time they spend with a D.A., in court, or writing reports past their working hours? Many City employees work well past their 40 weekly hours without even having the ability to request paid overtime in order to keep the City running? This should be in the new Chief’s mind when the DROP program gets dropped, many sworn members will leave with their 90% pensions, and the cost of completing tasks at stations will be done in, you guessed right, an overtime basis. Neither opening a locked door nor receiving over $200,00 a year should be considered making a mark by a native San Franciscan when hundreds of employees have been and will continue to be laid off coming July. Far more fiscal frugality will have to be demonstrated before you should have the Sharpie to make your mark, Greg!