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San Francisco police scatter ATM thieves, arrest 1

A new ATM machine sits in a telephone booth at Clooney’s Pub on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023. The bar has had to buy a new ATM machine and relocate it as a result of the ATM robbery on October 24. Thieves have attempted to or have robbed at least 16 ATM’s in San Francisco this year- 8 of them in the Mission District. San Francisco police crime data reports only 10 ATM thefts in the city this year, but business have counted more.
Thieves were not able to smash into an ATM in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood Wednesday. | Source: Gina Castro/The Standard

A man was arrested after several suspects fled when police officers found them trying to break into an ATM lying on a San Francisco sidewalk on Wednesday.

Shortly before 4:20 a.m., police responded to a caller’s report of a possible burglary near the intersection of 25th Street and San Bruno Avenue in the city’s Potrero Hill neighborhood.

Officers arrived within five minutes and saw several people trying to break into the machine on a sidewalk near the intersection.

According to a post on the Citizen platform, suspects had been seen trying to use sledgehammers against the machine before fleeing the area in a black Lexus SUV. The Standard has been unable to verify the information from Citizen with police.

READ MORE: ATM Thieves Target San Francisco Bank and Oakland Grocery Store

Some of the people got into the vehicle and fled, but officers pursued and detained one man who tried to run away, police said. Investigators were working to determine where the ATM had been taken from.

The theft attempt, similar to one that damaged a bank ATM and left another damaged ATM in a grocery store parking lot last week and a CVS drugstore last month along 32nd Avenue, continues a spike in such crimes that has concerned authorities and San Francisco business owners.

George Kelly can be reached at