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Googler Buys Building, Kicks Out Tenants, Gets Protested

Photo: Matt Rosoff / Business Insider

A group of about 50 protesters swarmed the San Francisco home of Google lawyer Jack Halprin early Wednesday morning.

Halprin purchased 812 Guerrero Street, a seven-unit apartment building in the Mission District, for $1.4 million in 2012.

In 2014, he served tenants an eviction notice under the Ellis Act, which allows landowners — many of whom had purchased buildings at a discount because of rent-controlled tenants — to push existing tenants out so the buildings can “go out of business” and be converted into condos.

According to Mission Local, this week tenant Rebecca Bauknight received a one-page Notice to Vacate that said she could be evicted from her apartment anytime after 6 a.m. Wednesday morning. Bauknight has reportedly lived in the building for more than 25 years.

Other tenants in the building recently won an appeal that effectively delayed their evictions from the building, but Bauknight did not join the law suit. A neighbor told Mission Local that Bauknight has a mental disability that prevented her from filing the papers on time.

Protesters who showed up at Halprin’s building Wednesday carried signs with slogans like “Evict Google,” “We love Becky,” and “This is a community, not a Monopoly board.”

They chanted things like “Hey Google, you can’t hide” and “”We’re prepared to be arrested and we won’t move.”

Though a protester told the crowd that Bauknight left the building at around 4:30 Wednesday morning, a neighbor told Business Insider that she had not yet been evicted.

A representative for the protesters spoke to the crowd: “This is not right. This is not the San Francisco I love.”

“When tenant rights are under attack, what do we do? Stand up and fight back,” the crowd shouted.

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