The Snatch: Breeding Nuisance 24/7

Rat Pack

You know the rat problem that's festered in parks and businesses of late? Apparently, an S.F. woman has been breeding rats in her room at a residential hotel and then releasing them in public parks, earning her the nickname of “rat girl.” KTVU got its hands on a 2011 video from a Minna Street SRO showing the woman's room stuffed with dirty clothes and rats. Apparently the tenant, identified as 43-year-old Erica J., has been breeding rodents for years, and police can't do much to stop her. The city's Public Health Department told KTVU that by the end of May 2011, it had exterminated 1,000 rats in the room and neighboring areas. “The rats have actually burrowed into other people's rooms. They can carry disease, they can carry parasites,” said Animal Care and Control Capt. Denise Bongiovanni. “I was immediately concerned for the well-being of Erica. I believe that there's a serious underlying mental health issue that needs to be addressed, and it seems to be unresolved.”

Melting ICE

Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi announced that San Francisco will no longer hold undocumented men and women in custody for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). “My long-held belief is that local law enforcement should not be in the civil immigration detainer business,” he said in a press release. While San Francisco's pride in declaring itself a “Sanctuary City” is a favorite topic for Internet troglodytes, it warrants mentioning that such a policy is overwhelmingly popular among law enforcement agencies even in the reddest of states. The rationale is simple: Immigrants worried about being deported will be reticent to report crimes. Mirkarimi says this is the culmination of more than a year's worth of efforts, including “last year seeking a no-ICE detention policy through Board of Supervisors legislation.” “You're gonna see a wildfire of other county sheriffs' departments issue a No-ICE detainer holds [policy] or severely limit them,” he predicts. “It looks like California is going to become a no-ICE detainer state.”

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