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FBI warns terrorist groups could target Pride Month events around country

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FBI warns terrorist groups could target Pride Month events around country


SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) — It’s one of the most lively celebrations in the Bay Area. Every June, our region comes alive with the sights and sounds of Pride.

“We want to celebrate that people in San Francisco live authentic lives and that we can love who we love,” said Suzanne Ford, the executive director of San Francisco Pride.

Ahead of this year’s celebrations comes a new public service announcement from the FBI and Department of Homeland Security.

In it, a warning that foreign terrorist organizations like ISIS could target Pride events around the country.

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MORE: Foreign terrorists targeting US ‘increasingly concerning’: FBI director

Cameron Polan works with the FBI’s branch here in San Francisco.

“The public service announcement is definitely something new this year,” Polan said.

The FBI says as of now, there are no immediate credible threats here in the Bay Area. However, they are advising people to take precautions.

Beyond the FBI’s warnings, San Francisco Pride executive director Suzanne Ford says sadly threats against Pride events are nothing new.

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“Our organization for many, many years has worked with state, local, federal law enforcement agencies and other appropriate agencies to make sure our community’s safe,” Ford said.

MORE: The dangers behind Republicans’ outrage over Easter falling on Transgender Day of Visibility

The FBI’s PSA has also gotten the attention of groups like Equality California.

The LGBTQ nonprofit says they want everyone to be comfortable celebrating Pride this year.

“Go with a friend, let people know you’re attending Pride, have a meet up spot, have an exit plan, know a check point around the area,” says Jorge Reyes Salinas.

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Because with Pride kicking off in just a few weeks time, Ford says this year’s celebrations will be better than ever before.

“We’re going to come together, there’s going to be one million people out on Market Street, and we’re going to proclaim to the world that in San Francisco Pride is our community and that we’re going to be there,” Ford said.

If you’re on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live

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San Francisco, CA

Dead owner, disgraced official: Why this blighted theater sits empty after 17 years

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Dead owner, disgraced official: Why this blighted theater sits empty after 17 years


Over the years, multiple plans have been proposed for the theater, located at 2465 Mission St. between 20th and 21st streets, but none of them ever materialized. Now, after the structural engineer for the most recent plan went to prison—disgraced former city official Rodrigo Santos—and one of the two property owners died, the ruined theater’s future is uncertain.

“There’s no plans right now for the Tower Theater,” said Robert Cort, who co-owned the property with his mother, Vera Cort, until her death last month at age 82. “I’m not developing anything there. I’m just hoping someone will lease it and fill the space.”

Despite Cort’s hopes that someone will lease the property, he admitted it isn’t listed on the rental market. There are no listings online for the property. When The Standard visited the site on Wednesday, there were no signs advertising the space as available for lease.

Cort said that dealing with his late mother’s estate left him no time to sign a listing agreement for the theater.

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“There’s just so much going on,” he said.



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San Francisco, CA

Community rallies around beloved SF dog walker after house fire

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Community rallies around beloved SF dog walker after house fire


A block party fundraiser is held for a beloved SF dog walker whose home burned after recently receiving racist threats. 

A San Francisco neighborhood came together on Sunday to gather donations for a beloved community dog walker who lost his home in a fire on Tuesday. It’s just the latest challenge Terry Williams has had to face after receiving several racist packages at his home near Alamo Square last month.

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“It feels real good you know all the love, all my neighbors and friends showing up, writing letters on the garage,” said Terry Williams.

Williams, who lives with his parents, was not at home when the fire broke out. Williams’ parents were rescued by firefighters from the upper floors of the three-story residence. The home has since been red tagged. 

A block party fundraiser is held for a beloved SF dog walker whose home burned after recently receiving racist threats. 

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On Sunday, neighbors held a block party fundraiser for the family, dropping off supplies and clothing.  

“I just felt like I needed to do something. He is like the Mayor of Alamo Square, so everybody knows him,” said neighbor Clarice Torrey. “He has been such a great neighbor. He has stopped a break in for me, and he’s moved my car for street sweeping.”

Beloved Alamo Square dog walker Terry Williams during a May 11 rally in support of him and his family. 

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“It’s a lot, but I’m trying to be strong, but in moments I do break down,” said Williams. 

Last month, he received two racist packages, including a black doll with a noose wrapped around its neck. San Francisco Police are now investigating both deliveries as hate crimes. 

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Meantime, officials said it could be months before they can determine what caused the fire. 



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San Francisco, CA

Photos: Carnaval San Francisco 2024 fills, thrills Mission District

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Photos: Carnaval San Francisco 2024 fills, thrills Mission District


Michelle Jeffers, chief of community programs and partnerships for the city’s public library, said Sunday would be her first Carnaval, and pointed to her parade float members preparing for the day’s displays of community presence. 

Many on the float work at the Mission branch’s temporary site on Valencia Street between 23rd and 24th streets during the original location’s renovation, which is due to finish in 2025.

“We’re trying to stay hydrated, getting our scarves ready, and we’ve got our ride,” Jeffers said, pointing to one of the library’s bookmobiles. “We just love a parade!”

Sunday’s parade followed a Carnaval festival that began Saturday along several blocks of Harrison Street, featuring music, dancing, food and crafts.

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Musical headliners included Mexican singer Noel Torres, Latin fusion group Pirulo Y La Tribu and Honduran band Banda Blanca blending merengue and punta sounds. Cuban Latin pop star Franco was also set to perform. Previous headliners have included Santana, Tower of Power, Los Lonely Boys, Celia Cruz, Los Tigres del Norte and Tito Puente.

The festival typically draws 400,000 people, according to local organizers, and generates about $10 million for local businesses.



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