SFPD arrest art gallery owner, seen on video hosing down homeless woman, on battery charges
SAN FRANCISCO - San Francisco police say they've arrested Shannon Collier Gwin, the man seen last week on video hosing down a homeless woman in front of his art gallery.
District Attorney Brooke Jenkins on Wednesday announced her office had issued an arrest warrant for Gwin, 71, of San Francisco.
Jenkins tweeted an update on the case to say Gwin is charged with misdemeanor battery. She indicated that Gwin, owner of Foster Gwin art gallery in the Jackson Square neighborhood on Montgomery Street, is alleged to have intentionally and unlawfully sprayed the unidentified victim with water on Jan. 9. She announced the charges, but did not indicate that the arrest had happened earlier in the day, as SFPD reported.
Police said Gwin was arrested at around 3:30 p.m. on the 700 block of Montgomery, the same location where the spraying incident took place.
Video of the incident quickly went viral and sparked the ire of the community.
"The alleged battery of an unhoused member of our community is completely unacceptable. Mr. Gwin will face appropriate consequences for his actions," Jenkins wrote.
In addition, she said that vandalism that was seen and reported at the art gallery is likewise unacceptable. "Two wrongs don't make a right," Jenkins said.
Gwin's charges follow an investigation of the incident by SFPD. Gwin was booked into San Francisco County Jail. His bail was set at $2,500.
If found guilty, Gwin could face up to six months in jail and a $2,000 fine.
SFPD said when they responded to the initial dispute, both parties had declined further police action at that time.
MORE: San Francisco police will investigate man seen on video spraying homeless woman with hose
KTVU interviewed Gwin following the incident. He apologized and indicated that he snapped. He said he had previously offered the woman a place to sleep outside his doorway for four days. He said he sprayed her when he became frustrated that the woman would not move.
Sup. Aaron Peskin represents the district. He said the woman is known to the community. A crisis response team offered the woman help, according to San Francisco Fire Department. The unhoused woman accepted city services.
Police said while an arrest has been made, the investigation of this case remains open.
Bay City News Foundation contributed to this report.