Crime

Berkeley couple arrested with unregistered gun stash

Police said they found a couple trying to flee with numerous firearms after accidentally firing a round into a neighbor's home. Image: Google Maps

Police said they found a couple trying to flee with numerous firearms after accidentally firing a round into a neighbor’s home. Image: Google Maps

A North Berkeley couple who officials said had stockpiled weapons and discussed “eventual war with the government” was arrested last week by the Berkeley Police Department.

Last Tuesday, just after 11:30 p.m., police received a report that someone had fired a bullet through the walls of a neighbor’s apartment in the 1700 block of Highland Place, according to court documents. Police responded and found two people, later identified as Jeremy Adrian and his girlfriend, Masayo Shinohara, on the second floor landing.

The couple had with them a case an officer identified as one commonly used for the storage and transportation of weapons, according to police, along with a black rolling duffel bag. Police detained Adrian and Shinohara in handcuffs. According to an officer at the scene, Adrian admitted that he had fired a gun into the next-door unit.

According to Adrian’s attorney, Elena Condes, who represented her client Friday at his arraignment hearing, Adrian had removed the ammunition clip from his gun but had not realized there was still a bullet in the chamber. Condes told Alameda County Superior Court Judge Paul Delucchi on Friday that Adrian had accidentally fired the weapon, then immediately went over to his neighbor’s apartment to apologize and “make sure everybody was OK.”

Police said, according to court documents, that the bullet apparently entered the next door apartment through a bedroom wall and shattered a mirror.

After detaining Adrian and Shinohara, according to court documents, police located in their possession a semi-automatic SKS assault rifle, which they identified as an illegal weapon “because it violated the California Assault Weapon ban;” and other firearms and ammunition. Police said they found a Browning .22-caliber semi-automatic pistol and accompanying silencer, along with two Saiga 12-gauge semi-automatic shotguns, in the couple’s possession.

In addition, according to court documents, authoriries charged the couple with identity theft after police found personal information and access card account information for another person, identified as Celena Galicia. Deputy district attorney Ursula Jones Dickson told the judge Friday that credit cards in Galicia’s name had been used by the couple to purchase various items.

Defense attorney Condes told Judge Delucchi that, though unregistered, most of the firearms in her client’s possession were not illegal: “It’s not as bad as it seems,” she said, as she argued for a bail reduction, which the judge ultimately granted, from $530,000 to $400,000. (Condes also noted that Adrian had no prior criminal record.)

But prosecutor Dickson described the couple as “extremely dangerous,” and said Adrian and Shinohara had conversations with police about how they had been “stockpiling weapons” and the possibility of “eventual war with the government.”

“They were both found leaving, trying to get rid of guns in bags,” she said. “They had multiple guns and multiple types of ammunition. They are extremely dangerous.”

They were arraigned Friday on eight felony counts related to the shooting, the firearms, the silencer and identity theft. (See the full complaint from the district attorney’s office.)

Adrian, 46, and Shinohara, 43, were scheduled to enter their pleas Monday morning. Adrian is being held with a bail of $400,000 at Santa Rita Jail.

Shinohara’s bail was set at $230,000, but she is being held, also at Santa Rita, without bail due to a federal immigration hold. She told the judge she could not afford her own attorney, and Delucchi said the court would assign a public defender to represent her.

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  • smokehill2

    Only in La-La Land would they call that a “stockpile of weapons.”

    My wife has more guns than that in the bedroom closet since she ran our of room in the gun cabinets.

    We hunt dove, quail, pheasant, turkey, bear and deer, which obviously (except to the limp-wristed anti-gun fanatics) requires at least three different gauges of shotgun. So that’s a minimum of six shotguns between the two of us, which really doesn’t cover the deer. Depending on the environment you’re hunting in, the rifle caliber choice will vary on deer, elk & bear, but few deer hunters own less than two deer guns — for each hunter in the family. When my son left home, he took a small gun cabinet with 16 different rifles, shotguns& pistols.

    I haven’t, of course, even mentioned the rural varmints that have to be dealt with, like coyotes, bobcat or foxes. I may live on a small farm, but I’m only five miles from a city of 150,000, and only two miles from a couple of yuppie gated communities — but that doesn’t stop predators from killing my livestock. Unfortunately, yuppies seem not to be in season.

    I won’t stoop to defending a suppressor (idiotically called a silencer by the unschooled), though the law prohibiting them is absurd. A couple of lace-panty congressmen saw a couple of movies and thought these were some sort of a threat, when 99.999% of them were used for their intended purpose — quieter target shooting and varmint control. Any crook can easily make one, of course, but as usual it’s the honest people that pay the price for an ignorant public and Congress.

    What kind of moron regards a half dozen firearms as a “stockpile?” Someone so ignorant of the subject that their opinion should properly be ignored.

  • smokehill2

    Yeah, and it’s all the fault of those old paranoid gun nuts like Tom Jefferson, who stated that very clearly on a number of occasions.

    Not that I really expect anyone in Berkeley to have read th Federalist Papers ….

  • smokehill2

    The fallacy of extrapolating all this from one single incident is ….. simply staggering.

  • smokehill2

    Law-abiding gun owners? You don’t realize that silencers are prohibited since 1934, lumped into the same law as machine guns and sawed-off shotguns?

    Hardly a minor offense — it’ll land you in prison easily unless you have applied to ATF, been investigated & paid the $200 tax, though I suspect that in Berkeley there are State or county restrictions that prevent any legal ownership anyway.

    YOU might want to call these fools “law abiding gun owners” just to bolster your silly argument, but I guarantee you that the NRA doesn’t and won’t defend them at all.

    These guys were breaking several local or State laws, most of them felonies.

    Gun owners I know might not agree with some of the absurd laws out there, but we follow them anyway. It’s hardly worth going to prison for a shotgun that will carry two more rounds than my perfectly legal Winchesters or Berettas.

    Fortunately, I live near Tom Jefferson’s old farm, where the Bill of Rights, including the Second Amendment, were created — and our gun laws reflect that we actually have READ the Bill of Rights & the Federalist Papers.

    I have around 40 firearms, for dozens of different purposes. This sounds excessive only to those completely ignorant of firearms & their use. But every one of them is legal.

    Lumping these criminals in with those of us who ARE law-abiding gun owners is ridiculous.

  • smokehill2

    Very true, but I suspect that the 270 million firearms estimate is probably very much on the low side. Most of that came from a lot of different phone surveys, in which it’s hardly likely most gun owners are going to tell the truth anyway.

    There were no sales figures available at all until 1968, and those still only count those transacted in a gun store. At least half of the guns in my two gun cabinets did NOT go thru an FFL dealer, nor should they. I have four firearms from my grandfather, two inherited from my mother, three from my father, and four from uncles & aunts as they grew too old to hunt. And of course I have bought most of my pistols & shotguns privately — no paper trail at all.

    Based on several gun owners I know, it seems like fewer than half their guns have ever shown up on ANY record, since most of them either go back before the ’68 requirement, or were inherited, or bought/traded from friends.

    It’s hard to compare guns and cars since cars are obviously used — actively, anyway — far less. Though one could argue that the pistols my wife and I carry every day (legally, of course) are certainly being used.

    The number of “gun accidents” is so inflated as to be useless, of course. Every gangbanger that catches a bullet knows the story to tell the guys in the ER — “I was cleaning it and it went off.” The cops all know it’s a lie, but can’t do anything about it.

  • smokehill2

    A perfect example of Sharkey’s point — that you should at least be vaguely familiar with the subject under discussion before venturing a strong opinion.

    There were NO “battlefield weapons” here, unless you count that SKS — a clunky, one-shot-at-a-time relic that has been obsolete since WW2. It was replaced by the AK-47 (obviously dating to 1947).

    The SKS is a semi-automatic rifle, just like your grandfather’s deer rifle. Modern “battlefield weapons” are virtually all selective fire — and can be fired fully automatic (machine guns, for you amateurs).

    Just because it’s painted black and scares the ignorant doesn’t mean it’s a military weapon.

  • guest

    Do you think people in a city like Berkeley need as many guns as you need on your small farm? I don’t think we have many predators killing people’s livestock in Berkeley.

  • guest

    You think Thomas Jefferson wrote the Federalist Papers? That is amazing.

    And you think no one in Berkeley (which includes UC) has read the federalist papers? That is even more amazing.

    Why don’t you comment on a news site where you live, rather than being a troll on Berkeley’s news site?

  • guest

    The_Sharkey is commenting under his old handle for the first time in a long time, but you can always recognize his comments. Very angry, very arrogant, very intolerant, attacks rather than explains. Not effective as a way of convincing other people, but he wastes lots of his time on these ineffective comments.

  • smokehill2

    My limited exposure to CA’s gun laws leads me to believe that its nonsensical treatment of “assault weapons” is the same as the old Federal AWB, and only minor cosmetic changes easily turned many of them into completely “legal” firearms. Which only pointed out the absurdity of the definition.

    My SKS, for example, had a folding stock and a bayonet. The folding stock was grandfathered, but I pinned it anyway, knowing that the ATF is little better than the Gestapo & would cite me for that, even knowing it would be immediately thrown out of court (after I had spent thousands on lawyers).

    The bayonet I simply removed with a screwdriver and put it in a drawer until the AWB got repealed, as everyone expected.

    Why a folding stock, or a bayonet, present such a danger to the public I have not discovered yet. I suspect that no American has been bayonetted since the Civil War, except on foreign battlefields.

    But apparently Bill Clinton made our children safe from bayonet charges, for which we all should be properly grateful.

    And California continues this valuable practice ….