* (Disclaimer: This video content is intended for educational and informational purposes only) *
San Francisco, California — At approximately 7:48 pm, the San Francisco Department of Emergency Management received a 911 call from a reporting witness stating that she saw “maybe a houseless person with two large sticks…beating the crap out of…what looks like a shelter where someone else might be living.” The witness took cellphone video footage, which captured the movement of shadows of the incident. At approximately 8:01 pm, two Bayview District Officers arrived on scene. Officers observed two subjects Michael Macfhionghain and Rafael Mendoza on the ground next to a brown tarp, which was located behind a low concrete and steel wall, underneath the freeway overpass. Both subjects were lying next to each other on the ground in an active physical struggle involving a knife.
Macfhionghain held a knife in his right hand with the blade pointed downward over Mendoza. Mendoza, who was laying on his back, used his right hand to hold onto the right wrist of Macfhionghain. As the Officers approached the subjects, Mendoza told the Officers, “He got me right there,” and “I can’t breathe,” which can be heard on the Officers’ body worn cameras. Macfhionghain told the Officer, “This man…repeatedly attacking me,” which can also be heard on the Officers’ body worn cameras. The Officers gave Macfhionghain numerous commands to drop the knife. An Officer drew his Department issued firearm and held it in front of him while he spoke with both subjects. The Officer told Macfhionghain he believed Mendoza had attacked him. The Officer asked Macfhionghain to drop the knife so that he could help him.
The Officer continued communicating with Macfhionghain and Mendoza as additional Officers arrived. An Officer at the scene believed he recognized Mendoza from a prior police contact and that Mendoza primarily spoke Spanish. Another Officer at the scene, who is a Department Qualified Spanish-speaking Bilingual Officer, also gave Mendoza commands in Spanish to drop the knife. Mendoza responded verbally in both English and Spanish. At approximately 8:07 pm, an Officer discharged a less lethal weapon (a 40 mm foam baton projectile) one time at Macfhionghain. Macfhionghain did not comply or stop and continued holding a knife with the blade pointed downward over Mendoza. Officers additionally discharged their less lethal weapons (two separate 40 mm foam baton projectiles) at Macfhionghain. Macfhionghain did not comply or stop and continued holding a knife with the blade pointed downward over Mendoza.
Another Officer then deployed OC (or pepper) Spray at Macfhionghain while Officers continued to give Macfhionghain commands to drop the knife. Macfhionghain continued holding the knife with the blade pointed downward over Mendoza. At approximately 8:10 pm, after an approximately 9-minute struggle, Macfhionghain suddenly climbed on top of Mendoza and brought the knifepoint downward towards Mendoza’s upper body. Multiple Officers again yelled for Macfhionghain to “drop it” and “drop the knife.” Officers discharged less lethal weapons bean bag projectile and one 40 mm foam baton projectile) at Macfhionghain. Within seconds, Macfhionghain again brought the knifepoint up and then downward towards Mendoza in a stabbing motion at least two times while Officers continued to give commands to drop the knife. At this time, an Officer Involved Shooting occurred involving four Officers.
Three Officers discharged their Department issued handguns. One Officer discharged a Department issued rifle. Officers broadcasted “Shots Fired” to Dispatch and requested an emergency response from medical personnel. Officers immediately pulled Mendoza away from Macfhionghain and rendered medical aid, including CPR. Simultaneously, Officers handcuffed Macfhionghain, pulled him away from the area, and rendered medical aid, including CPR. San Francisco Fire Department (SFFD) medical personnel arrived on scene and continued to render aid to Macfhionghain. Macfhionghain was later pronounced deceased at the scene. 30. SFFD medical personnel arrived on scene, continued to render aid to Mendoza, and transported Mendoza to Zuckerberg SFGH where he was later pronounced deceased by medical personnel.
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0:00 – 911 Call
2:58 – Cellphone Video Footage
3:15 – Bodycam: Officer #1
12:24 – Bodycam: Officer #2
13:02 – Bodycam: Officer #3
13:37 – Bodycam: Officer #4
14:14 – Bodycam: Officer #5
14:50 – Bodycam: Officer #6
15:23 – Bodycam: Officer #7
16:00 – Bodycam: Officer #8
16:32 – Bodycam: Officer #9
18:22 – Bodycam: Officer #10