Bill O'Reilly said that the "5 to 7 percent" of San Francisco police officers alleged to have used excessive force do not constitute "a lot" of officers, adding, "I'm not sure what the big deal is out of that."
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During the February 13 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, host Bill O'Reilly said that the "5 to 7 percent" of San Francisco police officers alleged in a recent series of news articles in the San Francisco Chronicle to have used excessive force do not constitute "a lot" of officers and stated further that "I'm not sure what the big deal is out of that." O'Reilly was responding to former San Francisco Board of Supervisors president Angela Alioto, whom he hosted along with San Francisco Police Officers Association president Gary Delagnes in order to discuss the Chronicle series about incidents of violence employed by the San Francisco Police Department, titled "The Use of Force."
From the February 13 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor:
O'REILLY: But how pervasive is this?
ALIOTO: Five to 7 percent.
O'REILLY: This is what I'm trying to get at. Look, every police force has bad people on it. I mean, everybody knows that.
ALIOTO: My point --
O'REILLY: But if you have 100 officers out of 2,200, that's not a lot.
ALIOTO: No, but --
O'REILLY: I mean, that's less than 5 percent. And there's -- the Chronicle doesn't assert they did anything. All they say is that these guys -- and they could be, you know, in the worst neighborhoods, in the worst kind of stuff, narcotics, or whatever -- are responsible for a high rate of force violations. Look, you know -- you've been on the supervisors' board. You know what police work is. If you're down in the sewer and the gutter with these people, they're going to throw everything they can at you, particularly if you're good, if you're a good cop. They're going to try to get you.
ALIOTO: I not only know what police work is, my son, Joe, before he was police commissioner, was a San Francisco police officer at 19 years old.
ALIOTO: I'm fully aware of that. But Bill, you surely are not suggesting that we just let the 100 be 100 and continue that kind of behavior?
O'REILLY: No. I'm not sure -- it's not many. And I'm not sure what the big deal is out of that. Most other police forces would say, "Gee, just 100? That's not so bad."
ALIOTO: No, but do something about the 100 who have excessive records.