In the latest alert about recent robberies near the UC Berkeley campus, authorities have warned community members about a trio who robbed two male pedestrians early Monday morning and acted as if they were armed.
The University of California Police Department said the incident happened around 2:20 a.m. Monday at Hearst Avenue and Oxford Street, which is at the northwest corner of the UC Berkeley campus.
Two males (no age listed) were walking near the intersection when three men approached them.
“The suspects simulated as if they had weapons and demanded the victims’ property,” said UCPD in a prepared statement. “The victims complied and the suspects were last seen running south on Oxford and possibly getting into an older sedan.”
The same descriptions were provided for all three robbers: black men in their early to mid-20s, 5 feet 10 to 6 feet tall, with thin builds. They were wearing black zip-up hooded sweatshirts and black pants, police said. No weapons were seen.
Berkeley police officers searched the area but could not find the men.
UCPD and BPD collaborated to put out the release Monday afternoon through the UCPD email notification system.
UCPD has received at least 14 robbery reports within its jurisdiction over the past six months, according to CrimeMapping.com, an online service local law enforcement agencies use to make basic crime information publicly accessible.
The Berkeley Police Department has received more than 162 reports, according to CrimeMapping, which only appears to have robbery data listed through Aug. 5. (Berkeleyside has reported the problem to BPD and asked for a fix.)
Available data indicate a spike in robberies in July, however. Robbery reports were in or near the 30s from March through May, then dropped to 21 in June. In July, they nearly doubled, with 37 robbery reports listed within the city’s jurisdiction. And there have been numerous news reports of robberies in August, too, despite the lack of official trend data.
The next crime update from BPD is slated to come in September. That mid-year crime report provides an overview about trends from the first six months of the year.
Overall in 2016, compared to the prior year, robberies increased about 9%. The Berkeley Police Department said the increase reflected a wave of pedestrian robberies north of the UC Berkeley campus, as well as a “significant commercial robbery series.”
Crime tips from UCPD:
- Travel with a friend or in a group
- Be alert and aware of surroundings
- Keep electronic devices out of public view as they are a popular robbery target
- If a motor vehicle is involved in a crime report its direction of travel, license plate, color, make/model, unusual characteristics (e.g., dents, bumper stickers, graphics, wheels, tinted windows, lifted/lowered), number of persons, etc.
- Members of the campus community can learn more about night safety services