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Homeless Encampment Next To SF Caltrain Tracks Cleared

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Personal items left over after authorities cleared a homeless encampment from under a I-280 on ramp in San Francisco. (CBS SF)

Personal items left over after authorities cleared a homeless encampment from under a I-280 on ramp in San Francisco. (CBS SF)

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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – A large homeless encampment under the King Street connector to Interstate 280 in San Francisco next to Caltrain tracks was being cleared out Tuesday, although many of the displaced said they plan to return.

The 50 or so “residents” were asked to vacate the tent encampment near the Caltrain station on 3rd and Townsend. San Francisco Department of Public Works crews have been cleaning debris from the area.

Authorities said several items the homeless left behind, including tents and cooking gear will be tagged and stored to be reclaimed later.

PHOTOS: Homeless Encampment Cleared In San Francisco

“We tag it and have a tag for them. There’s a lot of trash, a lot of rats, a lot of excrement and a lot of waste,” said Sarah Wrathall with the California Highway Patrol.

A homeless outreach team came in before the cleanup crews on Tuesday and Jamie Crisco, who served in the Army in both Panama and Ethiopia, said he’s thrilled.

“I’m a combat veteran and I’ve been on the veteran’s housing list for 4 ½ years,” he said. “And today, the team member said if you’re willing, ‘we can put you up in a hotel.’ So I said ‘let’s do it.’”

KCBS’ Margie Shafer Reports:

But others were not as fortunate, not getting that hotel offer from city officials. Many said that instead of going to the much more dangerous Tenderloin, they would be back under the connector on Tuesday night.

CHP officials said a fence will be erected around the area to keep the homeless out from under the overpass.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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