Crime

Arrests, crime narratives from Berkeley Police, March 3-9

Berkeley Police Department. Photo: Emilie Raguso

Berkeley Police Department. Photo: Emilie Raguso

The following items represent just a sampling of calls, and were selected by the Berkeley Police Department unless otherwise noted. Click to see past narratives from police, and Berkeleyside’s most recent compilation of calls for service. See calls for service statistics here for the past several weeks; they were provided by the Berkeley Police Department.

From March 3-9, there were 10 burglary reports, 31 auto break-in or theft reports, and seven stolen vehicle reports to the Berkeley Police Department, according to CrimeMapping.comTen robberies and seven assaults, domestic violence incidents or batteries were reported. These numbers are subject to change. Click the previous links for the most current information.

March 3, Sunday: At approximately 10:30 p.m. a robbery occurred near Ashby and Telegraph avenues. A male victim stopped in the area to make a phone call. A man approached him and grabbed his cell phone, then shoved him to the side. The victim was not injured and the suspect fled the area on a black bicycle. The robber is described as a black male with an average build. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and gray sweatpants.

March 4, Monday: A thief broke into a vehicle between 12:30 and 5 p.m. in the 1100 block of San Pablo Avenue. The driver parked and locked her vehicle. A thief broke a window in the vehicle and rummaged through the interior. Nothing appeared to have been taken.

Police responded to an accident between a motorcyclist and driver at Sacramento Street and Ashby Avenue at 8:09 p.m. Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats said the driver, a 20-year-old Berkeley man, was eastbound on Ashby and hit the motorcyclist while turning left onto Sacramento. The motorcyclist, a 53-year-old San Francisco man, had been heading west on Ashby. He was taken to the hospital for medical treatment but his injuries appeared non-life-threatening. Police do not believe drugs or alcohol were factors in the collision. (This came in to Berkeleyside via a reader tip.)

March 5, Tuesday: Between 9:30 a.m. and 5:45 p.m. a thief stole a vehicle from the 1500 block of Harmon Street. The victim had parked on the street and locked his gold 2002 Chevy Camaro. When he returned, he discovered the vehicle was missing.

On Tuesday at 5:08 p.m., the Berkeley Police Department responded to a report of a robbery in the 2100 block of Blake Street. The victim reported that two suspects had attacked her inside her residence, said Coats. The victim had known the suspects for a short period of time. An argument occurred when the victim told the suspects to leave, and threatened to call police. The victim reported being injured during the assault. She was taken to a local hospital for treatment. Cash, a computer and other items were taken from the residence. This is still an active investigation and officers are following up on several leads.

March 6, Wednesday: Sometime between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., a thief kicked in a door at a home in the 1500 block of Channing Way. The thief stole several items, including jewelry and a computer.

March 7, Thursday: At approximately 5:30 a.m., the alarm sounded at a business in the 3200 block of Adeline Street. The store owner heard the alarm and checked the business. He discovered that a vandal had damaged one of the storefront windows, cracking it with an unknown object.

March 8, Friday: The Berkeley Police Department responded to a residence in the 600 block of Arlington Avenue at about 7:15 p.m. for a report of a robbery in progress. The homeowners came home and found a thief inside. One of the homeowners attempted to detain the suspect and a struggle ensued. [Update, March 18: The resident contacted Berkeleyside and said that he, in fact, "threw the burglar to the ground and … held him there for 5-10 minutes" until police arrived and arrested him.] The homeowners were not injured during the incident. Taken and recovered were jewelry, currency and other miscellaneous items. Police arrested Mark Watson, 62, of Richmond on suspicion of residential robbery. Watson remains in custody with a bail of $175,000 at Santa Rita Jail. He is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing March 21 at 9:05 a.m. at the Wiley W. Manuel Courthouse in Department 115.

March 9, Saturday: At approximately 11:30 p.m., police responded to a call regarding a loud report in the 2300 block of Derby Street. The caller heard one loud report in the area; nothing else was heard or seen. Officers checked the area but found nothing.

The Berkeley Police Department responded to a report of vandalism in the 2800 block of California Street. Between 2 and 3 a.m., an unknown suspect vandalized numerous vehicles parked in the area.  The suspect appears to have punched the tires of at least seven vehicles. There is no suspect description and an arrest has not been made at this time. (A reader asked Berkeleyside to ask police about this incident, and said at least 12 cars in the area had been vandalized.)

March 10, Sunday: Police responded to a solo bicyclist accident near Spruce Street and Northampton Avenue. The bicyclist, a 69-year-old male, was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries. He declined to make a police report regarding the incident. (A Berkeleyside reader asked us to inquire about this incident.)

March 13, Wednesday: Police responded to a collision between a vehicle and a cyclist near Sacramento Street and Dwight Way at 7:24 a.m. The cyclist, a 27-year-old Berkeley man, was injured and taken to a local hospital with what appeared to be non-life threatening injuries. The driver was a 48-year-old Berkeley man. Police said the preliminary investigation indicates the bicyclist may be at fault for entering the roadway unsafely. (A reader asked Berkeleyside to find out what happened police flares blocking Dwight and hearing lots of sirens.)

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California announced on March 13 that a Berkeley man has been sentenced to 27 months in federal prison for possessing a destructive device. According to a news release, the Berkeley Police Department had served a search warrant in 2009 at the home of Emoru Obuke Obbanya and found a loaded flare gun that had been converted into a .38-caliber handgun. Police also reported finding “.38 caliber ammunition and numerous bomb-making materials in Obbanya’s bedroom.” The attorney’s office said Obbanya admitted, on Sept. 17, 2012, to possessing explosive components and a converted .38-caliber handgun. He was sentenced on March 12.

COMMUNITY SAFETY TIP FROM BERKELEY POLICE: Home Burglary Prevention

  • Always lock yours doors and windows
  • Consider an alarm system
  • Make your house look lived in

The Berkeley Police Department includes this disclaimer: “Please note that these are Calls For Police Services (CFS) only and are subject to review and reclassification. These CFS numbers only reflect part one crimes reported to BPD. The numbers reflected in the report are only a snapshot of what occurs in the City of Berkeley. The numbers are considered for informational purposes only and should not be used for data analysis or comparison to other agencies. Cases may be reclassified after further review of the incident, by supervisors, investigating detectives or the District Attorney as appropriate.” Learn more about calls for service near specific locations with CrimeView Community.

Berkeleyside publishes many articles every day. To see all our stories in chronological order, and read ones you may have missed, check out our All the News grid.

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  • M.E. Lawrence

    A neighbor in our complex (on Jefferson near Allston) was at home the other night when someone took the screen off a window and tried to break in. Fortunately, she was able to drive him off.

    To the BPD’s list of cautionary measures, I would add good exterior lighting (front and back and sides). Question people who seem to be casing a house or car; let them know that you and your neighbors watch out for one another. And keep a whistle on your keychain in case you need to make a long, loud noise.

  • http://twitter.com/Pappachoppers Pappachoppers

    I vehemently disagree. To suggest to approach and question a suspect is foolhardy, and places your life, and possibly your family at risk if they are in the home. Approaching anyone with such thoughts to chase them away, may make it easier to invade your home without having to break in a home. Remember, there is a high probability that they are armed. Just call the police and report what you see. Don’t’ be embarrassed if the persons are not criminals. Also, rather than keeping a whistle and blowing it to let the criminal know where you are, if your car is nearby, keep your keys handy and push the panic button on the keys. This will wake up the neighborhood. You must remember to keep a fresh battery in your care keys to allow your panic button to work from a distance.