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Former San Francisco fire commissioner in hospital following attack in the Marina

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Local cannabis entrepreneur and former San Francisco Fire Commissioner Don Carmignani was hospitalized after being beaten by two men Wednesday night following an altercation outside his mother’s home in the Marina.

“My son Don was beaten by two men with a steel pipe last night on Laguna Street and Lombard Street,” read a Nextdoor post by Carmignani’s mother, Joan, thanking the neighbors who got involved, stopped the fight and called 911. “If they were not there my son would be dead!”

READ MORE: Who Is Don Carmignani, the Ex-SF Fire Commissioner Accused of Bear-Spraying Homeless People?

“He is in the hospital with a skull fracture, broken jaw and many cuts,” added Carmignani’s mother. 

The San Francisco Police Department confirmed that at 5:20 p.m. a man was attacked on Laguna near Magnolia Street with a metal object and taken to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. A suspect was arrested. 

“Right now, one of my dear friends is in the hospital because last night in the Marina he was attacked by a homeless person with a metal pipe,” San Francisco Supervisor Catherine Stefani, whose District 2 covers the Marina, said in a city meeting Thursday. 

Stefani explained that Don Carmignani’s mother had called the police because homeless people were doing drugs outside her door and wouldn’t leave. When no police responded, her son came to talk to the men outside her door and was assaulted.

“We’re 55 officers short in the Northern Station. That’s a real thing,” said Stefani, who said Carmignani’s sister-in-law is her daughter’s teacher. “This isn’t fear-mongering. […] I’ve been here 21 years, and this didn’t use to happen. I believe this is a direct result of the fact that we do not have enough officers on our street.”

“It was two guys smoking meth or crack in front of his mother's house, like blocking the entrance, and she's in her late 70s,” said Ali Jamalian, a friend of Carmignani’s and the head of Sunset Connect dispensary and the city’s Cannabis Oversight Committee.

He said the same men had been hanging out there for a while. “And I think the cops wouldn't come out despite a few complaints from others. When he went out and asked them to move, they assaulted him.”

“He's a very well-known local cannabis entrepreneur,” Jamalian said. “He's always been a pro-cannabis landlord and a fighter for the cause. And he's a local boy—Sacred Heart, third generation, wonderful human being.”

Mayor Ed Lee appointed Carmignani to the Fire Commission in 2013, but he resigned after only four months in the wake of an arrest for felony domestic violence. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge and was sentenced to a fine, probation and counseling, according to a 2016 SF Weekly report.

He went on to obtain multiple cannabis licenses from the city, becoming an early major player in the business in the city as California relaxed regulations on the drug.