Security Video Of Graffiti Vandals Heats Up S.F. District 9 Supervisor Race
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) -- The San Francisco District 9 Supervisor's race has heated up after surveillance video from a gas station surfaced Monday showing two people defacing the campaign headquarters of Hillary Ronen.
On Thursday, Ronen blasted her opponent Joshua Arce, claiming he obtained the surveillance video but delayed handing it over to police.
"What I am particularly now completely baffled about is why the Joshua Arce campaign would sit on evidence for 3 weeks, interfere with a police investigation and not turn it over to the police," Ronen told KPIX 5's Joe Vazquez.
Monday night, KPIX 5 aired surveillance video of what appears to be a crime in progress -- the scrawling of misogynistic graffiti on the door of the Hillary Ronen campaign headquarters.
The surveillance video is time- and date-stamped 5:22 a.m., September 5. KPIX 5 received the surveillance video anonymously.
Later in the day, Ronen and her female staffers posed for a photo in front of the graffiti as a statement to show the public they would not be intimidated:
The graffiti is profane and misogynistic. It reads, "Vote for Arce, ya c**."
Arce denounced the graffiti, declaring that nobody from his campaign was responsible. He also sent a text message offering to help clean it up. Ronen rejected his appeal, accusing him of negative campaigning.
The surveillance video is dark and the graffiti is difficult to discern. The video appears to show a man and woman walking in the 3400 block of Mission St. across from the 76 gas station.
In KPIX 5's initial report, the gas station owner said he gave his only copy of the video to a "property owner" across the street (pointing toward the Ronen campaign office).
On Thursday, the owner called the cellphone of the woman who obtained the thumb drive containing the video and asked her to return it. The woman, Gladys Soto, is a paid staffer of the Arce campaign.
Arce confirmed to KPIX 5 that Soto was dispatched to walk the neighborhood in an effort to find surveillance video in the days following the incident. Arce was not able to give specific dates that his campaign obtained the video and turned it over to police.
"Gladys was able to talk to the gas station [owner] and get a copy of the tape," Arce told KPIX 5. "I don't know the first day the police department obtained a copy but we made sure on our end to give the copy to law enforcement so it could be included in the investigation."
Ronen also accused Arce's campaign of blaming her own campaign manager for the graffiti, a charge Arce strongly denied.
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