Man smashes windows during Telegraph Ave. arrest

Broken window in a police cruiser. Photo: Berkeley Police Department
A man under arrest broke two windows in a police cruiser last week, according to authorities. Photo: Berkeley Police Department

A man facing arrest on Telegraph Avenue smashed out the rear window of a police cruiser with his head after first breaking the glass door of a nearby business, authorities said.

According to police, 40-year-old Richard Warner of Oakland was reportedly inside a business in the 2400 block of Telegraph Avenue on Aug. 6 when he was asked to leave shortly before 10:40 a.m.

“He was loud and creating a disturbance,” said Berkeley Police Officer Jennifer Coats, department spokeswoman, via email. “As he left the business he stopped and punched the glass to the front door, breaking it.”

A shattered window at Caffe Med. Photo: Ted Friedman
A shattered window at Caffe Med. Photo: Ted Friedman

An employee from the business asked police to arrest Warner in connection with the vandalism. As officers tried to detain him, Warner asked if he would be taken away.


“Warner was advised that he would be,” Coats said. “Warner without warning violently flung his upper body forward and smashed his forehead into the patrol vehicle window, smashing it.”

Officers tried to detain the man but he continued to resist, police said. He smashed his head against the rear window, breaking a second window and causing injury to himself.

Police managed to subdue Warner by taking him to the ground, Coats said. Berkeley Fire Department paramedics took Warner to a local hospital for treatment.

Afterward, he was taken to Santa Rita Jail where he was arrested on suspicion of vandalism, probation violation and resisting arrest.

Craig Becker (left) looks at damage to the door at his cafe on Telegraph Avenue. Photo: Ted Friedman
Craig Becker (left) looks at damage to the door of his cafe on Telegraph Avenue. Photo: Ted Friedman

According to local resident Ted Friedman, the incident took place at Caffe Mediterraneum. Warner had “called attention to himself with his loud mutterings and admonitions.” He was asked to leave and became upset.

Friedman wrote that Warner “lifted a dead-weight marble table from the floor and menaced patrons and staff with it. The marble table weighs, reportedly, more than one-hundred pounds, but the heavily muscled man lifted it handily.”

The incident caused $500 in damage to windows at the cafe, Friedman reported. Warner shattered two plate-glass windows with his bare fists, Friedman wrote in his own account of the incident.

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