1st Black San Francisco police chief dies at 83

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FILE – In this July 2, 2003, file photo, San Francisco Police Chief Earl Sanders rests on a book of documents and looks out at the Pacific Ocean, below the Cliff House, in San Francisco. Sanders, who became San Francisco’s first Black police chief after working as a homicide detective on such infamous cases as the 1970s Zebra murders, died Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. He was 83. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)

February 07 2021 03:30 pm

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Prentice “Earl” Sanders, who became San Francisco’s first Black police chief after working as a homicide detective on such infamous cases as the 1970s Zebra murders, has died. He was 83.

The San Francisco Chronicle says Sanders died Monday after battling kidney failure.

Sanders was chief from 2002 to 2003 but he worked in the department for nearly four decades.

He helped investigate the racially motivated Zebra murders that resulted in the convictions of four Black men for killing 15 white victims.

Police Chief William Scott calls Sanders a trailblazer who ultimately made the department “better and more inclusive.”

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