Two San Francisco supervisors are demanding that the city do more to inquire into the killing of 24-year-old Banko Brown, who was shot by a private security guard in a downtown Walgreens two weeks ago.
Brown was reportedly shot by a security guard during an alleged shoplifting incident. Officers said they located Brown outside of the store suffering from a gunshot wound, and despite administering life-saving medical aid, he died from his injuries at a local hospital.
Community members demanded that District Attorney Brooke Jenkins release surveillance footage after Jenkins announced she would not be filing charges against the security guard, 33-year-old Michael Earl-Wayne Anthony. Jenkins claimed the man was in “mortal danger and acted in self-defense.”
Last week, Supervisor Shamann Walton introduced a letter of inquiry for Jenkins to publicly release the video footage that shows the circumstances surrounding the killing of Brown. He also requested that her office reconsider its decision to not charge the security guard in the case.
Jenkins responded to the request on Monday, stating that though her office did not charge the suspect initially, she has asked police to gather additional evidence and conduct an investigation. Only after it is completed will she make a charging decision, she said.
Jenkins added that releasing evidence before the investigation is complete is “unethical” and could “compromise” the case.
“If a final decision to charge the suspect is made, this case will be prosecuted in the courtroom, not in the press or on social media,” Jenkins said in a news release. “All evidence will be presented in the courts.”
More calls for the video
During his roll call introduction Tuesday, Walton announced two additional letters of inquiry to the San Francisco Police Department and Walgreens to publicly release the video footage of the shooting.
Walton said that he consulted with the City Attorney and was informed that his letter request “has no interference with the investigation and is not at all unethical.”
“… I will continue to be relentless in my efforts to find out the entire story of what happened on April 27, 2023, when Banko Brown lost his life.”Supervisor Shamann Walton
“District Attorney Brooke Jenkins’ handling of the Michael Brown’s case has brought an array of legislative concerns for me as a lawmaker regarding the unfettered discretion California District Attorneys have in charging cases and the varying levels of subjectivity used to charge in such cases,” Walton said at Tuesday’s meeting.
“Nevertheless, I will continue to be relentless in my efforts to find out the entire story of what happened on April 27, 2023, when Banko Brown lost his life,” he added.
Also during his roll call, Supervisor Dean Preston asked the City Attorney to draft legislation that would limit the ability for security guards to use guns in San Francisco.
Preston wants to amend the Police Code so security guards are prohibited from unholstering their weapons unless there is an “actual and specific threat to a person.”
“While there remain many questions and uncertainties around the murder of Banko Brown, I believe we can all agree that under no circumstances is property worth more than human life. No property, let alone less than $20 worth of candy, is worth more than a human life — whether that person is homeless or not,” said Preston.