Police blotter: Recent crime in Berkeley

This is a partial list of recent crimes in Berkeley based on information from the Berkeley Police Department and the UC Berkeley Police Department. Last night’s murder occurred too late for this police-compiled listing.

See also BPD’s weekly calls for service and the San Francisco Chronicle’s regularly published list of arrests in Berkeley. For other sources of information on crime in Berkeley see Community CrimeView and

Thursday, January 19

Armed Robbery — Channing Way and Atherton Street
On Thursday, January 19, at 8:31 p.m., an armed robbery occurred at the intersection of Channing Way and Atherton Street. The victim was approached by the male suspect who displayed a silver handgun and robbed him of cash. The suspect fled the scene on foot and was last seen entering a white or silver vehicle, possibly a Lexus.  The victim was not injured during the encounter. The Berkeley Police Department searched the area but was unable to locate the suspect or the suspect’s vehicle.

The suspect was described as: a Black or Hispanic male, in his 20s, approximately 5′-5″ tall, medium
build, wearing a black kerchief or cap, a black jacket, blue jeans, and white tennis shoes.

Friday, January 20

Attempted Strong Arm Robbery — Channing Way Near Piedmont Avenue
On Friday at about 10:21 p.m. a 28-year old man was walking on Channing Way just west of Piedmont Avenue when he was approached by three males in their early twenties. One of the suspects distracted the victim, while a second suspect attempted to grab the victim’s wallet out of his pants’ pocket. The victim struggled with the suspects while a third suspect acted as a “look out”. The victim managed to get away from the suspects and call 9-1-1. The victim was not injured during the encounter.

A short time later UCPD detained three males matching the descriptions of the three suspects. The three suspects were positively identified by the victim and were arrested. In the interest of the ongoing investigation the names and descriptions of the suspects are not being released at this time.

Sunday, January 22

Aggravated Assault — Piedmont Avenue and Haste Street
On Sunday at about 2:45 a.m. BPD received a report of an aggravated assault victim being treated at a local emergency room.  A BPD Officer responded to the emergency room and took a report of the incident. The victim, a 19-year old student, had been walking southbound on Piedmont from Haste when he encountered three unknown males. The males spoke to him then knocked him to the ground.  The suspects began kicking the victim in the head causing multiple injuries to his face, nose and mouth. The Officer also noted several broken teeth and scrapes to the victim’s knuckles. There is no further information available at this time.

The suspects are described as: Suspect #1 – A White or Hispanic male, 5’11”, 170. Suspect #2 – A White or Hispanic male, 5’11”, 170. Suspect #2 – A White or Hispanic male, 5’11”, 170.

Drunk In Public Arrest – 900 Block of Carleton Street
On Sunday at about 9:20 p.m., an employee of a restaurant called about a woman outside the business who was causing a disturbance. When BPD officers arrived, the case officer noted that the woman was belligerent, had a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage on her breath when she spoke, was staggering and had bloodshot/watery eyes. Based on the officer’s observation of the woman’s objective symptoms of impairment, he arrested her for violation of PC647(f)– Drunk in Public as she could not care for herself. The officer learned the 36-year old Berkeley woman was on active probation so he booked her into the BPD Jail for violations PC647(f) and PC1203.2 – Probation Violation.

Attempted Commercial Burglary via Roof – 1300 block of San Pablo Avenue
Between the hours of 8:00 p.m. on Sunday and 6:30 a.m. on Monday, an unknown suspect or suspects attempted to enter a retail business in the 1300 block of San Pablo Avenue. The incident was discovered when some retail staff noticed water leaking from the roof into the interior of the store. The BPD officer and the manager got onto the roof as it was already being repaired and examined the area. Rubber shingle material had been pried, an area of about 5 feet by 2 feet. The sub-roofing material was not penetrated. The BPD officer who documented and investigated the attempted crime sent a message to all officers to check the roof when responding to this location for any alarm or suspicious call.

Grand Theft of Bicycle (over $950) -Shattuck Avenue and Center Street
On Sunday at about 1:50 p.m., a Berkeley man returned to the spot that he had locked his bicycle and discovered it had been stolen. The man called BPD. He told the BPD officer that he parked and secured his bike with a cable and lock at 6:00 p.m. the previous day. When he came back, it was gone. An unknown suspect or suspects cut the cable lock and made off with a gray men’s Rocky Mountain brand, 12-speed bicycle with red forks. The owner/victim told the officer that the bike is worth approximately $2,000.

Monday, January 23

Stolen Auto – Haste and Piedmont Avenues
On Monday a woman called BPD at 6:45 p.m. to report that her car had been stolen. She had parked her 1991 green Honda Accord in the area of Haste and Piedmont Avenues the previous day at 6:00 p.m. When she returned to the location just before she called BPD, she discovered it had been stolen. The BPD officer documented the crime and entered the vehicle and description into the Stolen Vehicle System (SVS).

Burglary to Garage – 600 block of Neilson Street
Between the hours of 7:00 p.m. on Sunday 9:07 a.m. on Monday, an unknown suspect or suspects cut the padlocks that secured the garage doors to a home in the 600 block of Neilson and stole two bicycles. The suspect(s) stole a Cannondale brand, green men’s racing bike and a Giant brand women’s blue road bike. The male victim was able to provide one of the serial numbers for the bikes and the BPD officer entered it into the Automated Property System database (APS) as stolen property.

Tuesday, January 24

Armed Robbery – 2700 block of Sojourner Truth Court
On Tuesday at about 9:05 p.m., a 19-year old pizza delivery person was bringing an order to an address in the 2700 block of Sojourner Truth Court. As he was walking away from the address after the customer paid for it, three male suspects got out of a silver Lexus GS300 type car. One suspect grabbed his arms, one suspect pointed a gun at the delivery person and the third suspect pointed a knife at him. The suspect with the knife demanded anything the victim had. The victim handed over a small amount of cash. The suspects got back in the car and drove away. The victim was not physically injured during the crime. Officers did area checks for the suspects and the suspect car, but did not locate them.
The victim described the suspects as: Suspect #1 — a Black Male Adult, 19 years old, 5’11”, medium build, black hoodie. Suspect #2 — a Black Male Adult, 19 years old, 5’11”, medium build, black hoodie. Suspect #3 – a Black Male Adult, 19 years old, 5’11”, medium build, black hoodie.

Bike Stop Leads to Dope Arrest – 63rd & California
On Wednesday at about 8:35 p.m., BPD Drug Task Force (DTF) officers detained a man on a bicycle who was riding at night without a headlight. A records check of the cyclist name revealed that he was on probation for DUI and had an active $20,000 warrant for his arrest. During a search incident to his arrest, an officer found three balloons containing powder heroin and some hypodermic needles in his possession. The officer booked the 43-year old Berkeley man for violations of H&S11350 – Possession of a Controlled Substance/Heroin, PC1203.2 – Probation violation and the warrant.

Strong Arm Robbery — Unit 1 Loading Dock, Durant Avenue
On Tuesday at about 4:24 p.m. UCPD Officers responded to a report of a strong arm robbery which had just occurred at the Unit I loading dock near Durant Avenue. The victim, an 18-year old female student, was walking eastbound on Durant listening to music on her iPod when she noticed three males walking in the same direction ahead of her. The victim turned into the Unit I loading dock area. The victim did not notice that the three suspects had followed her into the alleyway. One of the suspects hit her in the back of the head, knocking her to the ground. The two other suspects searched her pockets and took her iPod. The three suspects fled the scene on foot heading southbound through the alleyway. The victim suffered a laceration to her elbow. UCPD searched the area but was unable to locate the suspects.

The suspects are described as: Suspect #1 – A Black male in his 30s, wearing a red and black baseball cap and a blue jacket. Suspect #2 – A Black male in his 20s, with a goatee, and wearing a light
tan jacket. Suspect #3 – A Black male wearing a blue snow jacket and dark blue jeans.

Wednesday, January 25

Drunk in Public Arrest – 2200 Block of Martin Luther King Jr. Way
On Wednesday a community member called BPD at 1:10 a.m. to report a male adult walking and stumbling northbound on MLK Jr. Way near Bancroft Way. The assigned BPD officer found the described person in a front yard in the 2200 block of MLK Jr. Way. The officer saw that the subject was staggering and could barely stand on his own. He also had slow, slurred speech and a strong odor of alcoholic beverage coming from his breath and person. The man told the BPD officer that he had been drinking and was walking home, but the man thought he was in Oakland. Due to his high level of intoxication, the officer determined that the Oakland man was unable to care for his own safety. The BPD officer booked him into the BPD Jail for violation of PC647 – Drunk in Public.

Narcotics Search Warrant Yields Dope & Guns – 2 Arrested
On Wednesday the Special Investigations Bureau (SIB) detectives with the support of Drug Task Force officers and Property Crimes detectives served a search warrant on a known Berkeley drug dealer. The team detained both subjects that were the focus of the investigation without incident and served the warrant at their residence. At the conclusion of the search warrant, a significant amount of contraband was located. Officers and Detectives found two .38 caliber revolvers, a tech 9 assault weapon, a Glock 45 Cal. with a high capacity magazine, a 308 Cal. rifle, 8 bottles of codeine cough syrup, approximately 50 ecstasy pills, cocaine base, and over 20 pounds of marijuana. Detectives also seized over $6,000, a Cadillac Escalade, and a 2006 Maserati. Detectives arrested and booked a 32-year old male suspect and a 24-year old woman suspect for nine felony offenses each including H&S11351 – Possession for sales of cocaine base, H&S11351- Possession for sales of codeine cough syrup, H&S 11378- possession for sales of ecstasy pills, H&S 11359- Possession for sales of marijuana, HS 11370.1- possession of cocaine base while armed, PC 29800(a)(1) Formerly PC 12021(a)(1)- possession loaded firearm by convicted felon, PC 30305(a)(1) Formerly PC 12316(b)(1)- possession of ammunition by person prohibited from possession a firearm, PC 30600(a) formerly PC 12280(a)(1)- possession of an assault weapon and PC 1203.2- Felony probation violation.

Fraud – 1300 block of Alcatraz Avenue
On Wednesday at about 11:44 a.m., an 81-year old Berkeley community member called BPD to report some fraud. She had received a letter from Sprint stating she owed nearly $600 for an account that had been opened in her name. She immediately closed it and called BPD. The BPD officer documented the crime and provided some crime prevention advice and resources regarding fraud and Identity Theft.

Other police activities

Between January 23, 2012 at approximately 1:21 p.m. and Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 1:13 p.m., BPD officers have responded and managed 19 calls for service regarding possible abandoned vehicles throughout the City of Berkeley. (this does not include Parking Enforcement Officers)

Between January 23, 2012 at approximately 7:29 a.m. and Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 9:34 a.m., BPD officers responded to and managed 27 requests for advice on a host of issues.

Between January 22, 2012 at approximately 12:46 a.m. and Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 2:52 p.m., BPD officers have made 32 pedestrian stops on individuals throughout the City of Berkeley for a variety of reasons.

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  • Guest

    We’ve had several daytime thefts from homes in the ABC area – Addison, Allston, Byron, Bancroft, Cowper -near San Pablo. I know not all reports make the news, but people around here should be aware – daytime weekend and weekday, rear entry, sometimes even people home!

  • 2000Mariposa

    house break on emerson street saturday 1-21-12 between 12:40 to 330pm.  be safe!

  • Ralphk

    I appreciate the efforts of the BPD and Berkeleyside in helping us know more about crimes and other activities in our community.  However, I would like to challenge the policy of this site (shared by most news outlets) to keep the identities of the persons arrested out of the public report.  Yes, we all understand the concept of “innocent until proven guilty”, but we are not talking about forming a vigilante committee to impose penalty before trial. 

    I believe we are entitled to know the identities of the accused perpetrators, what city they claim as their residence, and even a published copy of their mug shot.  I, for one, want to know who we are dealing with.  Resources permitting, I would also like to hear about the outcome of their cases in our criminal justice system.  

    Am I the only Berkeleyside reader who wants more information, or is this something others believe we should have?  

  • Leigh

    Ralph, publishing much of that kind of information exposes any publication to a lawsuit. And besides, what would you do with a mugshot or a name? Sounds like a recipe for vigilantly-ism to me.

  • EBGuy

    Here’s what Edmunds has to say about the 2006 Maserati Coupe seized in
    the drug bust.

    “Because of its approximate $80,000 starting price (and Ferrari’s
    increasingly stratospheric asking prices), the Maserati Coupe strikes us
    as a surprising bargain.”

    And yikes, that’s a lot of weapons that were seized.  What block do
    these fine citizens live on?

  • Ralphk: We don’t publish names in the blotter as they are not supplied to us by BPD. We do publish names when covering major crimes that occur in the city, as soon as they are officially released. We are also actively working with the BPD to improve and expand our crime data and hope to be able to bring you enhanced coverage this year.

  • Bruce Love

    I’ll speak  to one problem of keeping systematic track of the outcomes of complaints, arrests and cases:  it’s expensive.   It takes long hours, money, expertise, and travel to collect all of the relevant public records.   When cases go to court, it means sitting in court.   It requires good but professionally sometimes adversarial relations with the police, government attorneys, defendant attorneys, courts, victims and defendants along with  their friends and families.   Thorough reporting will sometimes involve sourcing people the reporter understands to be active criminals.  The work can become extremely dangerous (c.f. Chaunchy Bailey).

    The stories can be extremely hard to tell so there’s expense on the analysis and writing side, too.  You say, for example, that you  want to know what the suspects look like and where they live — but if only those facts are emphasized the reporting can easily leave people with a false, even destructively false understanding of where they live and how the society around them functions.   Instead of shining light it is easy to reinforce irrational assumptions.

    Don’t get me wrong:  I think that crime reporting can in principle be very valuable.  It’s one of the main legitimate functions of journalism to offer people a more complete, more accurate understanding of the world around them.   Understanding the truth about the law enforcement and prison systems we have is vital to an informed citizenry, especially around here.   The problem is that it ain’t cheap and its very far from easy.

    It’s tragic.   You can see that in the way some of the comments here want to latch on to simplistic explanations and implied simplistic solutions

  • Chris

    I’d be curious as to the location too.

  • You might look at the San Francisco Chronicle’s regularly published list of names of people arrested in Berkeley:

    We have linked to it in our blotter, above.

  • Jessy

    On Wednesday afternoon, my neighbors and I saw a lot of police cars (six or seven cars, and many police officers) on Haskell and  San Pablo Avenue. Could this be the location?

  • EBGuy

    The one narcotics incident I see on the Berkeley Crimeview site on Jan 25th
    was at Sacramento & 67th.  Unfortunately, no further details are

  • Anonymous

    I’m glad that the police stopped someone on a bicycle riding at night without a headlight.  I wish they would stop more of them more often.   They are really dangerous traffic hazards and I know because I hit one . Luckily the rider wasn’t injured too seriously..

  • Anonymous

    Any information about what appears to be multiple smash-and-grabs at the North Berkeley BART station this week?  There were at least four or five pools of shattered safety glass in the parking lot.

  • Laurammenard

    Many cities/police dept routinely publish arrests on their website, including neighboring bay area cities. Arrest info is public information, anyone can go to the court house and read the police narrative once after charges are filed.

  • Dave

    I read this an hour after you posted it on Friday 1/27/2012.  I live near the corner of Allston and Byron and had your comments in my head as I got home from work that afternoon.  I opened my door to find a disheveled living room.  The robbers must have hit between 10A and 4P through the back door window.  The officer that came to our house said there were 4 robberies in the neighborhood just that day!

  • Charles_Siegel

    Sounds to me like Ralph (and others who agree with him) should contact the BPD and tell them that they want this information on Berkeleyside. 

    Because the BPD and Berkeleyside are working to provide enhanced coverage of crime, and because this data is already available at the courthouse (as Laura says) maybe BPD would add this to the information they provide to Berkeleyside if they get some requests for it.

  • Guest

    Dave, we are putting together a crime meeting for this area. Look for a flier soon.