San Francisco police are searching for a gunman who opened fire on a busy commuter train last week, killing one person and injuring another.
Police received reports of a shooting on a San Francisco Muni train just before 10am on Thursday as the light rail train was moving between stations.
Officers rushed to the city’s Forest Hill Muni station but found the train had just pulled away.
They were then able to catch up to the commuter train at the busy Castro Street Station, where passengers and the gunman ran off the train as soon as it stopped and the doors opened.
The shooter appears to have slipped out with the crowd.
Authorities have now released a photo of a ‘person of interest’ in the case.
San Francisco Police on Wednesday released a still picture from surveillance footage of a ‘person of interest’ in a shooting aboard a commuter train just before 10am
The pictures shows a black man in a black hoodie and jeans, wearing white sneakers and a black baseball cap with blue headphones around his neck and carrying a red backpack. Police have not gone as far to call the man a suspect, and instead say they would like to speak with him
‘Most of the people from the train exited the train quickly,’ Officer Kathryn Winters said in a follow-up news conference, adding that the police were unsure of how crowded the train or station had been at the time of the shooting.
Two victims were discovered at the scene, and a 27-year-old man was pronounced dead despite firefighters attempting CPR, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
The other victim, a 70-year-old woman was brought to Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center after reportedly being shot in the knee. She is expected to survive.
An investigation into the shooting is ongoing, and on Wednesday night, San Francisco police released still pictures from a surveillance camera of a ‘person of interest’ in the case.
It shows a black man in a black hoodie and jeans, wearing white sneakers and a black baseball cap with blue headphones around his neck and carrying a red backpack.
Police are now asking ‘this person to come forward and speak with investigators.’ They have previously described the suspect as a male of an unknown race wearing dark clothes and a hooded jacket.
Anyone with information is also asked to call the San Francisco Police Department’s tip line at (415) 575-4444 or text a tip to TIP411 and begin the text message with ‘SFPD.’ All callers may remain anonymous.
Police cars are seen lining up outside the busy Castro Street station on Wednesday morning following reports of a shooting onboard a commuter train
Authorities say they believe the shooting began after the gunman and a 27-year-old deceased victim got into an argument. A 70-year-old woman was also shot in the knee but is expected to survive
The shooting reportedly came after the gunman and the deceased victim got into a verbal argument, according to Supervisor Myrna Melgar.
‘The shooter pulled out a gun and shot the guy he was arguing with,’ Melgar told the Chronicle. ‘The second victim was not involved in the verbal altercation but just happened to be right next to the other victim.’
Supervisor Rafael Mandelman, who represents the Castro District, also said the victim and the suspect appeared to have known each other.
‘It’s cold comfort, but it does not appear that this was random,’ he told ABC 7. ‘It was not someone who, you know, got on the train and just started shooting, which would have been even more horrible.
‘This was horrible enough.’
Witnesses reportedly heard three to four gunshots just as the train was leaving the Forest Hill Station, according to Melgar, who urged any commuters who were on the train and witnessed the shooting to contact police immediately.
Meanwhile, authorities sought to ensure the public that the shooting does not seem to be connected to an upcoming Pride Parade in the area.
Police said in a statement that they ‘would like to assure community members and visitors that this incident appears to be isolated, and we do not believe is related to Pride festivities or was targeting any group or community.’
In a news conference, Officer Kathryn Winters sought to assure the public that the shooting does not appear to be related to an upcoming Pride Parade in the area
The shooting comes just weeks after voters in the Bay Area ousted woke District Attorney Chesa Boudin amid increasing crime levels.
Residents had accused the DA of not doing enough to keep citizens safe and introducing policies that allowed repeat offenders to commit crimes without fear of reincarceration.
According to the most recent San Francisco Police Department statistics, total crime is up 7.4 percent from last year, with larceny thefts up 19 percent and assaults up 12.2 percent from the same time in 2021.
The crime wave has seen a rise in a particular type of robbery dubbed ‘smash-and-grabs’, where thieves brazenly raid a store’s shelves often in broad daylight, often avoiding charges thanks to Boudin’s lax policies.
It has forced stores across the city to close down to avoid being victimized in the premeditated – and often coordinated – strikes.
In the end, more than 70,730 of roughly 118,000 citizens voted against the District Attorney on June 7.
Still, Boudin, 41, remained defiant, blaming billionaire Republicans and even the city’s police force for the loss, in a speech following his defeat.
‘The right-wing billionaires outspent us three to one,’ he said, going on to assert that citizens had been ‘exploited’ by these groups, saying they ‘took advantage an environment in which people are appropriately upset.’
‘They created an electoral dynamic where we were literally shadowboxing,’ Boudin, who narrowly won office in November 2019 as part of a wave of woke prosecutors who vowed to seek alternatives to incarceration, said.
He claimed the Republican and conservative ‘playbook involves delegitimizing and fear-mongering and recalling.
‘It’s a tactic being used by folks who are increasingly unable to prevail in elections when they put forward their views about public safety and justice.’
The shooting comes just weeks after voters in the Bay Area ousted woke District Attorney Chesa Boudin, who remained defiant in a speech following his recall
Boudin did concede that voters were understandably frustrated by the pandemic but thrust the blame on city officials that he said has failed to deliver on safety, housing, and equity, as murders and assaults continue to rise from last year – one of the worst years crime-wise the city had seen in decades.
He said Tuesday: ‘We have two cities. We have two systems of justice. ‘
‘We have one for the wealthy and the well connected and a different one for everybody else.’
‘And that’s exactly what we are fighting to change.’
He added: ‘This was never about one vote count. It was never about one election night party. This is a movement, not a moment in history.’