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San Francisco police scandal: Alameda County prosecutors review cases tainted by misconduct allegations

A photo of San Francisco Police Department Officer Christina Hayes, which was obtained from court documents. | The Standard | Source: Court records

An emerging scandal surrounding a veteran San Francisco narcotics officer who multiple sources said is facing allegations she had inappropriate relations with a confidential informant is spreading across the bay.

Alameda County prosecutors have begun to review criminal cases involving San Francisco Police Officer Christina Hayes that were potentially tainted by her alleged misconduct and may need to be dismissed, multiple sources told The Standard.

Alameda County Public Defender Brendon Woods said Hayes was “active” in his jurisdiction and that he expects local prosecutors to “dismiss these tainted prosecutions.” His office is also reviewing cases itself.

“We are waiting for the government to reveal more about this scandal, but police exploitation of informants is not a new story,” Woods said in a statement. “It should never be tolerated, and officers who do so … have no business arresting our clients.”

The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office declined to comment.

Hayes’ attorney Julia Fox did not respond to a request for comment Thursday, but previously said that her client is a well-respected officer.

“Officer Hayes has only ever been truthful and forthright in her representations to the [assistant district attorneys] with whom she works and certainly in her courtroom testimony,” Fox said.

The news comes as Gov. Gavin Newsom devotes more resources to cracking down on rampant drug dealing in Downtown San Francisco with support from Mayor London Breed and other local leaders.

The tally of cases tossed by the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office since Monday has also grown to at least six and is expected to increase, defense attorneys said.

San Francisco prosecutors have not detailed the reasons for dropping the cases but may have a hard time salvaging those that rely heavily on Hayes since the allegations could impact her credibility.

Alexander Golovets, a private defense attorney, said he has already had two San Francisco cases dismissed due to Hayes’ involvement.

“She was the primary officer,” he said. “That’s why all these cases are falling apart.”

Randy Quezada, a spokesperson for San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins, said that top attorneys in his office are analyzing cases that may be impacted because of the “current unavailability of a witness.”

“Defense counsel will be notified in each case as needed regarding how we intend to move forward,” Quezada said.

Hayes, 42, was taken off the streets by Chief Bill Scott on June 20 and stashed in a unit often used for troubled officers, internal records show. The 16-year veteran has worked in narcotics since at least 2018.

Among the cases San Francisco prosecutors dismissed was one in which Hayes was involved in the buy-bust arrest of a suspected dealer in the Tenderloin in July 2022. Hayes was one of the arresting officers and testified about her knowledge of the drug trade and her part in the operation.

“I did the arrest search and found a wad of money inside her person,” Hayes said in court early this year about the arrest.

Defense attorneys say Hayes is a regular in court. She was also recently the lead investigator in a San Francisco drug case late last year in which Assistant District Attorney Angela Roze used her as an expert witness.