Police blotter: Recent crime in Berkeley

This is a partial list of recent crimes in Berkeley based on information from the Berkeley Police Department, followed by a snapshot of BPD activity this week. The BPD’s spreadsheet of calls for service is available on Google Docs. See also 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 Crimemapping.com.

March 25:

Drunk In Public Arrest – 1500 block of Oregon Street – #2012-16021
On Sunday, March 25, 2012 at about 9:32 p.m., a BPD patrol officer responded for a second time that night to an apartment building in the 1500 block of Oregon Street. The calls were regarding an unwanted person who was not welcome but had returned after being warned not to. During the second call for service, the BPD beat officer and a cover officer detained the man. The man displayed impairment and an inability to follow directions. The officers could smell a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage on his breath, his speech was slurred, his eyes were bloodshot and he had to lean on a pole to maintain his balance. The beat officer arrested the City of Oakland man for violation of 647 (f) PC – Drunk in Public.

March 26:

Fraudulent Use of a Debit Card – 2400 block of West Street – #2012-16109
On Monday, March 26, 2012 at 11:44 a.m., a community member called BPD to report a fraud. He told the BPD officer that he had just received a notification from his credit union that a charge had been made using his debit card number in another city at an office supply store for over $210 worth of merchandise. The victim told the credit union that he did not authorize the purchase and that he has his debit card in his possession. The man wanted documentation and a case number.

Identity Theft – 2000 Fourth Street – #2012-16120
On Monday, March 26, 2012 at about 12:25 p.m., a Berkeley woman called BPD to report that she was the victim of Identity Theft. An unidentified suspect or suspects had used her personal information and bank account number to fraudulently charge over $2,800 from her account. She told the BPD officer that she was checking her bank statements and noted four charges of over $700 each were made to an online catalog. She immediately closed her accounts and called to document the crimes.

Theft of Dogwood Branches – 2900 block of Pine Street – #2012- 16113
On Monday, March 26, 2012 at about 10 minutes after noon, a Berkeley man called BPD to report a theft. Sometime overnight, an unknown suspect or suspects had cut at least four branches from a flowering dogwood tree in the man’s yard. He told the BPD officer who responded to investigate that this was the second time in two weeks that this type of theft had occurred. The BPD officer examined the cuts and determined that they were clean, likely the work of a pruner or other like garden tool. The man said that he has seen similar dogwood branches with flowers on them for sale in flower stores so he believes the suspect is cutting and stealing the branches to sell them.

March 27/28:

Residential Burglary via unlocked garage – 1300 block of Francisco Street  #2012-16428
Sometime between Tuesday, March 27, 2012 at about 9:30 p.m. and Wednesday, March 28, 2012 at about 8:00 a.m., an unidentified suspect or suspects burglarized a garage in the 1300 block of Francisco Street. The woman resident discovered the crime and called BPD to investigate and document the crime. The officer determined that the suspect had entered the backyard through an unlocked gate and got into the garage through an unlocked pedestrian door. The suspect(s) made off with an Apple laptop.

March 28:

Residential Burglary – 700 block of Hilldale Avenue #2012-16496
At about 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 28, 2012, a community member who lives in the 700 block of Hilldale Avenue went outside to get the mail and noticed that the garage door was wide open. Upon further inspection, the woman noticed that approximately 48 bottles of assorted wine that were store on some shelves inside the garage had been stolen. She called BPD and a patrol officer responded. She told the BPD officer that her husband left at 6:00 a.m. for work that morning and she had been home all day. She did not know if the garage had been left open. She told the officer who investigated and documented the crime that the total value of the wine was about $900.

March 29:

Battery, Vandalism & Possession of less than 28.5 grams of Marijuana Arrest – 2300 block of Bancroft Way #2012 -16621
On March 29, 2012 at about 9:10 a.m., a homeless man from Las Vegas, Nevada swung a plastic “wet floor” A-frame sign at a representative/member of a social service program at a church in the 2300 block of Bancroft way. The suspect missed the victim but damaged a sheetrock wall.  The suspect then fled after repeated failed attempts to hit the victim with the sign. The suspect toppled folding chairs and tables then ran from the building. BPD officers detained the suspect nearby. The victim positively identified the detainee as the suspect. Officers found marijuana in the 37 year old suspect’s possession during a search incident to his arrest for the listed offenses.

Snapshots of what your BPD officers are doing:

  • Between Sunday, March 25, 2012 at 7:29 a.m. and Thursday, March 29, 2012 at 3:46 a.m. BPD officers made stops to investigate 14 suspicious vehicles throughout the city. Officers made two arrests and towed one vehicle as a result of these investigations.
  • Between Sunday, March 25, 2012 at 2:47 a.m. and Tuesday, March 27, 2012 at 9:47 a.m., BPD officers responded to 7 domestic disturbances with yelling or arguments heard or seen. Officers arrested one individual for felony domestic violence (PC273.5) and investigated, then managed the others to a resolution.
  • Between Sunday, March 25, 2012 at 11:37 a.m. and Thursday, March 29, 2012 at 12:25 p.m. BPD responded, investigated and documented 23 petty theft cases.
  • Between Sunday, March 25, 2012 at 11:40 a.m. and Tuesday, March 27, 2012 at 15:26p.m. BPD responded, investigated and documented 4 grand theft cases (value over $950).
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  • batard

    No more CFS spreadsheet?

    I wonder, could BS get a quote from Sgt. Kusmiss and/or the City Attorney’s office re BPD’s criteria for cherry-picking this data for public consumption?  I miss the old days when the WHOLE list was shared on a daily basis.  

  • Citizen

    I think you mean dogwood-picking.

  • Chip

    No spreadsheet this week?

  • http://www.davosnewbies.com lknobel

    I’ve added the link for the calls for service spreadsheet. Sorry it didn’t make it into the original post. 

  • http://www.davosnewbies.com lknobel

    The link to the spreadsheet is now in the opening paragraph. 

  • Berkeleyfarm

    The dogwood story reminds me of when someone came into my yard in the middle of the night to harvest my hydrangeas.  I happened to be reading a Chronicle while waiting for an appointment some months later to learn of a pair for doing the same down on the Peninsula.   Perps admitted to doing same in Alameda County.   Apparently it was quite a racket. 

  • Bruce Love

    At least it helps to prove that although Berkeley yards are most often used as costly hobbies, a lot of them probably could be making money.

  • batard

    Thanks, still only 73 calls this week which begs the question – what’s missing?  Back in the day there were at least 30-40 per day on the daily sheet, so somewhere along the way somebody is filtering the list down to a very small selection.

  • SarahSiddell

     I agree! As someone who walks a lot around Berkeley, I want to know about street crime like purse snatching, mugging, etc. If the police department decides they look better if people don’t know it’s dangerous to walk the streets, we may not get the information we need. Let’s have ALL the calls! Certainly there’s plenty of room in cyberspace. It’s not like we’re dealing with an actual “news hole” in a newspaper which is limited in size!