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S.F. antiques dealer who was recorded spraying a homeless woman with a water hose is arrested

Foster Gwin Gallery remains offline after vandalism and denunciations followed the incident.
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The San Francisco antiques dealer whose gallery was vandalized and denounced online after viral video showed him spraying a homeless woman with a water hose was arrested Wednesday and charged with battery, authorities said.

Collier Gwin, 71, was arrested on a misdemeanor battery charge, police said. He was booked late Wednesday afternoon into the San Francisco County Jail, where he was being held on $2,500 bail, according to jail records. No court date has been set.

A nearby business owner recorded video of Gwin spraying the woman on the sidewalk outside Foster Gwin Gallery on Jan. 9.

Gwin told NBC Bay Area at the time that he had called police and city social services frequently in the past after the woman became disruptive. Police have not publicly identified the woman.

“There’s absolutely nothing that can be done. They’ll take her to a shelter, and they will turn her out in two days,” he said at the time. “They will take her to the hospital. They will release her within a day.”

Foster Gwin Gallery in San Francisco.
Foster Gwin Gallery in San Francisco.Google Maps

The video created national controversy and led, authorities said, to vandalism at the gallery. Yelp suspended reviews of the gallery the day after the incident as condemnatory reviews poured in. 

“The alleged battery of an unhoused member of our community is completely unacceptable. Mr. Gwin will face appropriate consequences for his actions,” District Attorney Brooke Jenkins said Wednesday in a statement on Twitter. “Likewise, the vandalism at Foster Gwin gallery is also completely unacceptable and must stop — two wrongs do not make a right.”

Jail records listed no attorney who could speak for Gwin on Wednesday night. The gallery’s website was inoperative, displaying the message: “This site is currently under going scheduled maintenance. We will be back soon!”

The gallery “specializes in San Francisco abstract expressionist paintings and sculptures from the late 1940s through the 1960s,” according to a 2018 article in the Nob Hill Gazette. His clients include former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger; the late banker David Rockefeller; former baseball player Ichiro Suzuki; Gregg Popovich, the president and head coach of the San Antonio Spurs; and Joe Lacob, the majority owner of the Golden State Warriors, according to the magazine.