San Francisco on edge in post-election climate of emboldened hatred

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Federal park police say a nanny was attacked in Fort Mason Monday by a man who told her in Spanish, "No Latinos here".

Park police say they are investigating the incident as a possible hate crime.

The nanny said she was taking care of two children when a man made the comment, grabbed her and shoved her about 10:47 a.m.

A jogger helped her call 911. Park police later arrested a man who was wearing clothing matching the suspect description. He was taken to San Francisco General Hospital and is undergoing a psychiatric evaluation. Park police are asking anyone who might have witnessed the attack to contact them.

People who frequent Fort Mason said they were surprised.

"This is San Francisco. We have a really accepting community here. It's really upsetting that something like that would happen," said Stacey Waldspurger of Mill Valley who regularly jogs through the park.

"I'm actually kind of shocked that, I mean I've never seen any kind of disturbance here. It's usually just people with their dogs," Jean Miu, San Francisco

Mark Farrell, who serves on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors for District 2 surrounding Fort Mason spoke out and had a message for the community.

"Completely appalled," Farrell said, "This type of behavior has never had a place in the city and certainly in the light of last week's national elections we want to make sure that we send a very strong message that this type of behavior will not be tolerated here in San Francisco and we are going to speak out about it."

Some community members are taking action.

Volunteers with the group Castro Community on Patrol held a training session for new recruits Tuesday night. The orange shirts are meant to be a show of strength and a signal that extra eyes are watching the Castro neighborhood.

The Castro Community on Patrol has been around since 2006 and has stayed intact despite fluctuation in volunteer numbers from a high of 100 to the current number, 30.

This week, 10 more people signed up for a training session. Some say they are concerned about local crime. Others say they are motivated by last week's election of Donald Trump.

"I immediately had this sense that our community was going to be put at threat from that with the different rhetoric that had been going on during the campaign," said Darrell Standring, a new volunteer from San Francisco.

"I had been at a protest last week and one of the chants was like "whose streets? Our streets." And that meant a lot to me and this felt like a way to reclaim our space and make sure that our space is safe and protected after Donald Trump's presidency," said Ezra Lintner, who says she plans to drive up for patrols from Pacifica.

Gary Casey is the patrol chief of the group and says they are not vigilantes but a partner for the police and fire departments. The volunteers observe and report incidents but do not get directly involved.

"We train them to be observant about situations that might warrant a call to the police department or fire department," Casey said.

San Francisco police are planning extra neighborhood patrols and so far, there have been no reports of hate crimes in the Castro this past week.

"Through prevention and through people being aware of their own personal safety, that we can avoid those kinds of things but we need to be prepared for anything that comes up," Casey said.