Berkeley Police: Bystander stops 1 laptop robber at PIQ, but 1 escapes

Police arrest a young male near PIQ cafe, on Shattuck Square, near Addison Street, in connection with the robbery of a laptop computer, in Berkeley, on Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017. Photo: David Yee

A good Samaritan at a popular downtown Berkeley coffee shop and bakery was able to detain a robber late Tuesday afternoon, though his accomplice managed to escape, police said.

A Berkeleyside reader reported, at about 4:50 p.m., a “laptop robbery at PIQ. Caught one person the other got away.”

The Berkeley Police Department provided minimal information about the robbery, at 91 Shattuck Square, at Addison Street.

Lt. Angela Hawk said there was a strong-arm robbery with two separate victims.


“One juvenile suspect was detained by a by-stander. He was subsequently arrested. At least one suspect is still outstanding,” Hawk said. The name of the juvenile was not available due to privacy laws protecting minors. His age and city of residence were not provided.

The man who got away left in a vehicle westbound on Addison Street, according to unconfirmed scanner information reviewed by Berkeleyside.

Police respond to PIQ cafe, on Shattuck Square, near Addison Street, where they arrested a teenage boy in connection with the robbery of at least one laptop computer, in Berkeley, on Tuesday. Photo: David Yee

There have been 181 robberies reported in Berkeley in the past six months, according to CrimeMapping.com, an official resource for Berkeley police data. That does not provide a full picture of the number of laptops being taken from their owners, however. If no force or fear is used, the crime is categorized as grand theft, which is classified as a property crime rather than a violent one.