Anchor-out transition plan results in fire, dead dog, conflicting stories

Originally published at: Anchor-out transition plan results in fire, dead dog, conflicting stories | Boing Boing


My heart goes out to the dog caught in the middle (and in the boat). Horrible.


Well, nobody’s gonna suspect the fire was set to resolve an otherwise potentially intractable issue.
Oh no.
And the fact that the firefighters let it run for 18 mins before acting does not support any such suspicion at all.
Oh no.
Fuck those bastards.


California has a special kind of stupid when it comes to housing. (And it seems to be spreading…)

They refuse to build more housing, so it is actually affordable.

Then when there are people who can’t afford the housing, they keep making sure to destroy everything they have so they definitely can’t afford housing. Oh, you live on a boat? Here, let us crush that for you. Oh, you live in an RV? Here, let us crush that for you. Oh, you live in a tent? Let’s bulldoze it. Oh, you live in a house? Let’s build a highway over it.

I guess I kind of feel that if the government destroys your house, they owe you a house. If they don’t want people anchoring there, then they can find a place where they can anchor and provide assistance in moving there. If they don’t want people living in an RV on the street, they can build a RV park somewhere for them. If they don’t want people living in alternate housing, they can find them housing.

Yes, sometimes, logistically, there are problems with where people are staying at. But you have to enable them to live somewhere.


Power sawing through something and hitting nails/wires etc is a good way to start a fire (don’t ask me how I know), or it could have been the flashbangs or the taser. Or a match. However it happened, they’re still at fault, so yes, fuck those bastards. You wonder if they’d spent the money on carpenters, plumbers and electricians instead of law enforcement and attorneys, if they could have made some affordable housing and sanitation facilities more cheaply.


Cutting the roof off a boat with a chainsaw to get at what sounds like a known PTSD/not right veteran with a taser when his friends are around and could likely talk him down? He was endangering no one from inside the boat and they had towed the boat to a ‘safe location’ that appears to be the Sausalito Ferry Boat Landing (a terrible, public, near a hotel and restaurant, location for a sensitive SWAT style raid on a boat with someone thought to be armed.)

The situation seems pretty controlled with bad judgement all around by ‘the authorities’ – from a harbormaster who seems to want to incite problems and cops taking the martial approach.


Agreed. With all that tech and manpower, you’d think they could afford body cameras too.


One way to clean up the lack of use for body cameras is to treat as “destruction of evidence” and take this action by interpreting the “lack of evidence” with “adverse inference” in meting out punishment as a result.

“Officer, the claimant says that you hacked up, and set fire to his boat after he was taken into custody and have intentionally delayed the response of the nearby fire vessel. Do you have any video evidence refuting his claim.”

“No, your honor”

“Since we have bystander video evidence of these events and no evidence to refute this claim, we will be taking adverse inference to the intentional non-use of your video evidence. We will not deny his claim for damages as arson is not subject to qualified immunity.”


There’s also an open foredeck hatch right next to where they “had to” chainsaw to get in.


The Richardson Bay Regional Agency has a plan to get rid of these residents, many of whom are just peacefully living their lives

Perhaps this is a different breed of live-aboard than inhabits the coasts of Florida, their shenanigans made it difficult for cruisers to anchor.

The SRT used flash-bangs, bean bag rounds and tear gas to distract him, but he held his ground.

held ground… in a boat… most importantly, war speech regarding police.

It’s terrible that the police have no other method of dealing with things than burning his vessel murdering of his crew.

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When the guy was at his first mooring (before the cops towed him to where we see)… could he just not cast off and sail/motor away? While AT the dock, he might have been in some violation, but once away from that dock… he’s no longer trespassing? He’s moved on, no?

Destroyed his boat/home, killed his dog. Sigh. I always thought of all the States, California was the one place an oddball could find their way and just exist. Guess not.

“Hey honey, how was work today?”
“Same old… I just participated in a sanctioned act of senseless cruelty towards my fellow Man, the usual. What’s for din?”

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It was at Clipper Harbor, not the Ferry Boat Landing. The Ferry Boat Landing was closed for repair last I knew. Not that it makes this a better idea – there are plenty of people and businesses in the area that could have been hurt.

I honestly don’t know what approach would have worked here. Tensions are high enough that I don’t think anyone from the anchorage would have been willing to work with the sheriff or the RBRA to convince Mr. Smith to turn himself in or answer questions. Still, chainsaws, flash bombs and tasers are so far beyond a reasonable response that almost any other approach would have been better.

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The article from November has an interesting set of justifications for removing these “anchor-outs”:

“Commission staff have indicated that many of these boats are in a state of disrepair and that they frequently sink, resulting in the release of harmful chemicals into the Bay”

“People can’t live on the Bay,” Goldzband said. “That’s not what it’s for. There are no shopping centers in the Bay. There are no movie theatres in the Bay."

These people clearly can live on the Bay; they’re doing it just fine. I bet the real reason for wanting them gone is a fun mix of classism and resentment at people “unfairly” getting cheap housing.

Sausalito is TINY and can find ways to be segregated with animosity between no less than 5 geographic sets of residents. When you then bake in the racist, anti-semitic, and classist shit that is unconnected to geography things start getting complicated. Then the BCDC, GGNRA, GGTD and other public agencies come to help out.

I left Bay Area TV news 30 years ago, and the Anchor-outs were a huge issue then. The more things change…

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