Cops Accused of Joining Mobs Telling Man to Jump From Union Square Building; Mother Sues SFPD

Categories: Law & Order
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Group think
It's been a bad two weeks for the San Francisco Police Department. First the Public Defender releases footage of an alleged illegal drug bust; then the FBI launches and investigation. Now a  San Francisco mother is suing the SFPD, claiming officers joined in the chants of "bloodthirsty" mobs telling her son to jump to his death from a downtown building last year.

Kathy Yount filed her claim this week against the San Francisco Police Department, saying the plainclothes cops are partly to blame for the suicide of her son, Dylan Yount.

On Feb. 16, 2010, Dylan Yount walked onto the ledge of Forever 21, a store in downtown that overlooked Union Square. Crowds started to gather, resembling a "17th century mob," screaming and laughing at Yount, and telling him to jump.

Yount claims her son stood on the ledge for over an hour with no attempts by police to intervene; instead they joined in the chants, according to her claim filed in San Francisco courts.

"Under information and belief, upon landing, decedent was not medically treated, nor was his body covered," the lawsuit states.

She is suing San Francisco and the SFPD seeking $25 million in damages.

Hat Tip: Court House News

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57 comments
kathieyount
kathieyount

"Kathy Yount,Individually And InHer Capacity As v. City and County of San Francisco" is scheduled for a jury trial to begin July 28, 2014, with the Honorable Judge Cynthia Ming-mei Lee presiding. My two latest pieces are "7734: Are police in San Francisco public servants?" at http://ipinionsyndicate.com/7734-are-police-in-san-francisco-public-servants/

and "The SFPD: Still fighting the art of de-escalation" at http://ipinionsyndicate/the-sfpd-still-fighting-the-art-of-de-escalation/

kathieyount
kathieyount

From a 9-3-12 forum about police ignoring a street fight in NYC:  "In Australia, do they chant 'jump' when people look to commit suicide from the top of buildings?  I didn't think so!  America, #1!!!" This is followed by the Instablog link to "San Francisco crowd encouraged suicide victim to jump then laughed."  The poster said he found 3 examples on Google in less than a minute.  The first one was about Dylan's death.

http://www.mixedmartialarts.com/mma.cfm?go=forum.posts&thread=2055449&forum=1&page=1&pc=20

How sad that some take national pride in state-sanctioned suicide baiting. 

kathieyount
kathieyount

Making Up for Lack of Humanity By Kathie Yount, suicide prevention activist

 

From SFGate The Scavenger's "A man jumps to his death and people - laugh?" 2-17-10: "Posters expressed with startling honesty the trauma of seeing the suicide while offering an outpouring of empathy, perhaps making up for the sickening lack of humanity yesterday, and reminding us that there are still many good, decent people out there."

 

"Making up for" yesterday's "lack of humanity" will not happen for the man who saw no empathy, who went to his death experiencing abject hatred for his suffering as his final reality in Hallidie Plaza in San Francisco on Shrove Tuesday 2-16-10.  He died as Mardi Gras sport. Hopeless.  In great pain.  In a suicide baiting.

 

From Campbell, CA The Bryant Times' "Man who yells 'jump' arrested" 12-7-1984:

"A man arrested for yelling 'jump' to a college student threatening to leap from a water tank faces felony charges that could bring a prison term. 'That kind of behavior is poor citizenship and extremely irresponsible.  It's also against the law," Police Sgt Paul Kern said."  And explaining why police made the arrest his captain added, "If they hadn't, other people in the crowd might have taken up the chant."  Google "man who yells jump arrested."

 

Perhaps we do not need to be reminded that there are "many good, decent people" out here, but rather that what we allow is what will continue to be. 

kathieyount
kathieyount

"The Thin Blue Line," my poem that was included here in the comments last week, will no longer fit because of its length (new commenting system for SF Weekly).  I DID post the poem at Beto's Flickr site, "How Could This Happen?  San Francisco Powell Street Jumper R.I.P. Dylan God Bless."    

 

Patty Gamblin
Patty Gamblin

I know his mom! She was my English Teacher! I feel so bad for Kathie! I hope someday these people will pay for what they did!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Dylan was loved by many. However, we were  not able to be on the ledge with him. In his weakest moment he wasn't thinking about those of us who loved him. When I go out into the world and send my children out into the world I have to operate on a certain amount of trust in my fellow man. If I get stuck they will stop and help me get unstuck, if I'm lost they will point me in the right direction etc. Guess what, that's what I do for the people that YOU love when YOU can't be there. There wasn't anyone to do this for Dylan and for the people who loved him. If it takes suing SFPD to get my fellow man to watch my back.. then sue the hell out of them.

James Lee
James Lee

You guys are so FULL OF CRAP!  I was a tenant at that building.  Lofts at One Powell.  I was there for it as well.  The cops didn't CHANT for him to jump.  They DID snicker and laugh as they were leaving the scene though.  Pretty heartless but they didn't CHANT for him to jump.  They did try to open the door and get into his room and they did try to get him to come off the ledge but were unsuccessful. The people to blame for his jump aren't the cops (even though I can't stand SFPD because a lot of times they are shady).  The people to blame are the disgusting SF people and visitors that chanted for him to jump.  I find a lot of SF people are POS.  Those people will get what is coming to them one day.  As for Dylan, he did a lot of mushrooms while he was in Europe with his friend Trent Adams and he never got over his bad trip after he came back and started having suicidal thoughts and started talking about how the devil was going to get him.  He and his girlfriend argued during Valentines Day and she left for work at which point he decided to just end it while he was depressed.  It's sad this all occurred.  His mother is a joke for even trying to collect money from SFPD for this.  From what Dylan told people he knew, his mother didn't give a crap about him.  ALSO, his gf and his friend trent isn't any better.  from what heard, they kept all his belongings for themselves.  it's tragic all the way around.  

MOM
MOM

Seriously, how do you know that no one has a video, Dave?  

MOM
MOM

Thanks for bringing the discussion back down to a civilized level, people.  We are all interested in finding out what happened and doing what is right about it.  This is what Dylan would want.  This is what his mother wants.  This is what our society and our laws need.  We may not all agree about many details, but we all know the difference between what is morally right and what is morally wrong.  Do any one of us really want to live in a world where such an event could take place because the people participating in it can do so with impunity?  No.  All of us experience personal crises in our lives.  Let us hope that there are caring people around us when we do.

MOM
MOM

"America is great because we've all got each others' backs." President Barack Obama, State of the Union Address, 2-24-12

MOM
MOM

What's tragic is YOU, James Lee, as you deliberately try to draw attention away from the real topic:  How can we learn to better deal with the suicidal to avoid such tragedy "all the way around"?   Ubiquitous as you seem to be, James Lee, I have found YOU DO NOT EVEN EXIST!   Not only is it convenient for you that you WERE a tenant at One Powell (then and not now),  but also that your Asian surname makes the short list for most DOMINATE surnames among Bay Area homeowners!  There are 64 of you James Lees in San Francisco alone, 16 in Oakland, 30 in San Jose, etc., etc. There are 185 entries for James Lees in LinkedIn in the San Francisco area, 25 professional James Lees, etc. etc.  Lee must be to CA as Garcia and Montoya are to New Mexico or Proctor and Nichols are to Harrisburg.

This, I think I do know about you:  You are not who you say you are.  Your "Activity" says that you posted 4 comments with 3 likes in the last month.  Here's a problem:   there ARE NO POSTED COMMENTS at all after the "Kim Jong Un Weeps by Father's Hearse. . ." article although your activity lists the three comments you supposedly made.  Here's another problem:   the  one COMMENT you did SEEM to make on the "Teenage Canucks Fan and Brain Tumor Survivor. . ." IS recorded on your activity AND at the very beginning of the 2000+ comments that follow.  However, your comment comes BEFORE one from salianni2001ca posted 5 DAYS AGO after yours posted 1 month ago IN ORDER OF NEWEST TO OLDEST.   I could accept this computer anomaly maybe IF it were not for another problem.   If one tries to rearrange the 2000+ comments from oldest to newest (the opposite of how they are now) your comment WON'T EVEN SHOW UP until one starts all over again.  Do I know what this means?  Absolutely not.  Have I documented it?  Absolutely yes.  I am seeking the truth, James Lee, and I have nothing else NOW to do with my time.   Do I want revenge?  No. Do  I want CHANGE?  Yes. 

Second, your facebook page expired pretty early, didn't it?  True, it only had your name, high school, and graduation year.  Although I cannot bring it up anyone,  I DID manage to leave you two Facebook messages, begging you to contact me while it was "up," also documented.  

What I don't understand about you is this:  WHAT in the world would motivate you to say what you have said?  I have been up since 3:00 a.m. this morning (it's 2:00 p.m. here now) with just a quick shower and a trip into town to my regular therapist visit (two times a week).   I tell you this, James Lee or whoever you are, "those people" as you have said will not NECESSARILY get what's coming to them one day.  Karma doesn't exist, and all those feel-good pseudo-philosophical statements are untrue as almost all BLANKET statements are.  These ideas have kept people like me in therapy for a long, long time.  Bad things happen to good people all the time, and good things happen to bad people all the time, too.   If "what goes around, comes around" were true, then Dylan would be alive today.  He was a good man who would never have knowingly hurt another person. I agonize over his brutal death and the despair he must have felt in his last hour.  I worry about what he believed at the last.  

Another idea I want to share is this:  when news that Osama bin Laden had been taken out in a firefight by our brave NAVY SEAL forces, spontaneous cheering erupted in many American cities.  Not many would argue that bin Laden was a force that needed to be eliminated; our world is safer and better without him.  But even bin Laden's death--"cheered"?  The cheering was unseemly and significantly re-traumatized me.   For many months bin Laden's death was the only other death--BESIDES MY ONLY SON DYLAN"S DEATH--where "cheering" was involved.  Try googling it.  To this day, the pain from the CHEERING comparison leaves me weak.  I won't argue with anyone about what bin Laden "deserved," but I will go to my grave to defend Dylan.   Is the world a safer, better place without Dylan?   He DID NOT DESERVE to die this way.  Such mockery, derision, denigration, and inhumanity MIGHT be earned so that it would be expected at someone's death scene, I guess, but Dylan's?   To scream it  at one  who was UNKNOWN TO THE CROWD IS still a shock over and over.  I will carry with me your phrase the police "DID snicker and laugh" for the rest of my life.

James Lee, I don't want to become cynical.  I don't want YOU to become cynical or the people who yelled "jump" to a stranger to become cynical.  Dear Lord, we are all miserable about a world where such a thing could happen.   I STILL believe there is more goodness than evil in this world.  If you are wondering how i felt about your comments made between January 23 to the 25, please know that I have read so many thousands  of comments made by so many people, that Dylan and I will never ever have to fear facing God himself.   

I do not hate you.  I don't know you well enough to dislike you.  I WOULD LIKE TO HAVE MORE INFORMATION about what you know or have heard.  I CHALLENGE YOU, James Lee, explain to all of us HOW you could possibly know what happened inside the building and outside the building at the same time.  Please tell us how they did "try to get into his room" and how you know that if you were outside.  What did they DO to try to get him off the ledge?   How did they do that?  I await to hear what you can offer to help more families and friends avoid pain of this caliber.  You can write it here, on my facebook message account, at my mailing address (just my name and Harrisburg, MO will get it).  You can give it to my attorney or whatever.  Do the right thing.

Mpaige
Mpaige

James u are an Idiot. Dylan is Kathy's only child and u think she didn't care about him. One day u will have children and understand how stupid your comment is.As for her going after the sfpd it has nothing to do with the money.If she could c them all go to prison she would take that she is doing this in hopes it never happens to anyones loved one again. GET A CLUE!!!

Mpaige
Mpaige

James u are an Idiot. Dylan is Kathy's only child and u think she didn't care about him. One day u will have children and understand how stupid your comment is.As for her going after the sfpd it has nothing to do with the money.If she could c them all go to prison she would take that she is doing this in hopes it never happens to anyones loved one again. GET A CLUE!!!

CC4
CC4

Wow James. What an ass you are for commenting on all those personal things and talking about Dylan in a negative light when his mother is obviously suffering horribly and trying to find closure the best way she knows how! Shame on you!

CC4
CC4

Wow James. What an ass you are for commenting on all those personal things and talking about Dylan in a negative light when his mother is obviously suffering horribly and trying to find closure the best way she knows how! Shame on you!

Tyguy4496
Tyguy4496

James, the Devil will be there to find you. If not I know who will.. Thanks for letting us know where u live.

Tyguy4496
Tyguy4496

James, the Devil will be there to find you. If not I know who will.. Thanks for letting us know where u live.

Tyguy4496
Tyguy4496

James, the Devil will be there to find you. If not I know who will.. Thanks for letting us know where u live.

Ashnwalker72589
Ashnwalker72589

That is horrible to say about aby human. As for his mother she was my teacher and we all knew how she loved him dearly. how dare you be so disrespectful. Police shouldnt have been giggling they should have and could have done more!

MOM
MOM

Seriously, James?   Dylan got the lease for the apartment on the 6th, and only lived there until the 16th.  Do you have a better suggestion for making sure this doesn't happen again--other than a lawsuit?  To me, it's ludicrous that one must bring a lawsuit to obtain an official record of what happened during the last hour of Dylan's life.  

Martha H
Martha H

You are a warrior!!!!! For your son.. and future struggling SFB area souls that are on the ledge.. metaphorically and physically on the ledge.. sending you love and energy for your fight! Martha H Harrisburg MO

Shawnm
Shawnm

i like your posting.  devilman!

MOM
MOM

Please do not threaten ANYONE.  I don't know WHO you are Tyguy4496, but James said he "WAS a tenant" there.  I don't believe Dylan really ever knew a James Lee.  If he did, he would have had to have met him between February 6 and 16.  James Lee might be "fishing." 

Ashnwalker72589
Ashnwalker72589

They deserve that lawsuit! She deserves every penny!

MOM
MOM

I don't wish to be rude to James Lee, and I left a message on his facebook page, but I would seriously like to talk to him.  If there are any of Dylan's friends reading this, do any of YOU know who this is?  

MOM
MOM

I just want to say I accidentally "liked" your comment twice.  You are welcome to the toxicology report, Audibleangel.  His mom lives in Harrisburg, MO.  Just mail YOUR name and address to her, and she'll send you a copy.  You folks who know what the "word is" should share it with the rest of us.  How would you affect change in the way people with psychological crises are treated?  You can let his mom know that, too.   

Audibleangel
Audibleangel

Right.  Just sue for millions and bankrupt the city!!! Let's make the taxpayers pay for it.  i was standing RIGHT there when it happened.  The people that were chatting for him to jump were the pricks that hangout there on a regular basis.  The POLICE DID NOT CHANT FOR HIM TO JUMP.  I'm sure the video will prove that they never told him to jump.  You REALLY think the police would say that when there were hundreds of people there???  The word is that the guy did drugs before he jumped.  He has fault in it too.  This country is @#$! joke because of people like his mom who thinks they can just sue for MILLIONS AND MILLIONS and blame anyone that they think will pay up. Why don't they go after the people he did drugs with???  Probably because she knows they don't have any money to pay up.  so ridiculous.  

MoBulldog
MoBulldog

 Kathie is a wonderful person.  She was one of my teachers many years ago.  I watched Dylan grow up.  As for her not caring, wow I wish my mother didn't care as much as she doesn't.  She let him grow up into the wonderful young man that he had become.  Tell me, would a simple wrongful death lawsuit have gotten this many comments and attention?  I think not, if you really didn't care one way or the other you wouldn't be commenting on this article at all.  Until it is your son or daughter that endures the things that Kathie has gone through, don't make judgements.  Don't sit here and say how wrong she is.  Pray that this family can someday find peace and that SFPD will become a stronger and more trustworthy unit because she has not been afraid and cast it to the way side.  Good luck on finding closure Kathie, we are all praying for you.

Pookiewoody
Pookiewoody

She was also my teacher, and talked about Dylan almost everyday in class, where he was what he was doing...she cared so dearly for him. How dare you say that. Kathie Yount is a wonderful beatiful person and so is Dylan.

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