Crime

Berkeley police arrest man suspected of murder

Berkeley police have arrested a 21-year-old Bay Point man in connection with the Tuesday shooting on Sacramento Street that left 35-year-old Gary Ferguson Jr. dead and another man in serious condition.

Brandon Wallace has been charged with murder and attempted murder, according to Sgt. Mary Kusmiss, a spokeswoman for the police department.

She did not provide any details about what Wallace’s motive may have been or how police identified him. However, the Oakland Tribune reported that Wallace was arrested Tuesday afternoon after he went to Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Richmond to be treated for wounds he suffered in the shooting. He is listed as a student, according to the Alameda County sheriff’s department.

Kusmiss did not comment on whether police believe Wallace acted alone or had an accomplice. Witnesses at the scene told police they thought there had been two assailants.

Ferguson was shot around 8:43 a.m. as he was walking on the 2900 block of Sacramento Street, right near Johnson’s House of Style. The other man who was injured was a barber in that establishment, according to people in the neighborhood. He remains in the hospital but is in stable condition, according to Sgt. Kusmiss.

Ferguson had grown up in South Berkeley and was well-known in the community. By Thursday, a makeshift memorial that had been set up to remember him was decorated with candles, balloons, and signs where people posted their thoughts.

Ferguson was also well known in the area for a long running feud with another man that allegedly prompted them to have numerous gun battles in the neighborhood, according to community members who asked that their names not be used. The feud died down when the other man moved away.

Ferguson apparently struggled with drug addiction, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

A group of men who gathered Wednesday near the site of the slaying said Ferguson was probably killed because he disrepected someone. Although he had many friends in the area, it only takes one person being mad at you to make you a target, according to a community member.

“You can’t pinpoint why it happened,” he said. “Somebody didn’t like him enough.”

“You would think with all the people who love you, it only takes one who doesn’t like you to do something tragic like this,” said another man.

The Sacramento Street Merchants Association held a meeting Thursday and the slaying was one of the topic’s on the agenda, according to Michael Caplan, who heads up the city’s economic development office. He was planning to attend the meeting. There were also four Berkeley police officers who went to talk about the crime.

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  • http://www.818crime.com Van Nuys

    It’s sad to see such shootings occur, especially when the victim is an upstanding, longtime member of a community. Is this what people want to call home? I don’t think so.

  • laura menard

    Van Nuys claims Gary Ferguson Jr was ” upstanding member of the community” please provide evidence, or did you want a tour of the neighborhood bullet holes tied to the long time feud between Emmett Harris and his pals and Gary and his pals.