Category Archives: Crime

Crime

Berkeley marijuana dispensary robbed at gunpoint

The Berkeley Patients' Group has distributed free medical cannabis for years to low-income patients. A new law passed by the  Berkeley City Council codifies this and requires dispensaries to give away 2% of its cannabis to the poor.
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Police are looking for three masked robbers with a gun who tied up a security guard and took several trays of marijuana plants from a Berkeley medical cannabis dispensary over the weekend while the business was closed.

The robbery took place Sunday just before 1:20 a.m., said Officer Jennifer Coats, Berkeley Police spokeswoman, when three people went into the parking lot of the Berkeley Patients Group (BPG) dispensary at 2366 San Pablo Ave., near Channing Way.

A security guard was posted in the parking lot. No other employees were on site.

“The suspects approached the guard, one armed with a gun,” said Coats. “The guard was tied up. The suspects entered the business and forced the security guard to lay on the ground.” … Continue reading »

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Crime

Berkeleyside blotter: Crime in Berkeley, 12/31-1/6

Selected calls to the Berkeley Police, via CrimeMapping.com. Scroll down for detailed maps. Click the map above for the list. See the map key here.
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This overview of recent crime in Berkeley is based on reports to the Berkeley Police unless otherwise noted. Share photos, videos and tips, about breaking news or neighborhood safety issues, via email at crime@berkeleyside.com or on Facebook or TwitterDon’t assume someone else will alert us. We want to know about issues of concern and rely on readers to help us stay informed.

From Dec. 31 to Jan. 6, there were reports of five robberies14 burglaries11 assaults or batteries, three weapon-involved calls and no sexual assaults, according to CrimeMapping.com. There were also five stolen vehiclesfour disturbances and 24 auto break-ins or thefts from vehicles reported. A weapons call and a burglary were reported by the University of California Police Department (UCPD). The following items represent a sampling of calls; incidents that took place during a range of time are listed unless otherwise noted by the beginning of that time period. Arrested individuals listed in this blotter are presumed innocent.

Thursday, Dec. 31

UCPD arrested David Rivera, 24, on an Oakland Police warrant related to hit-and-run causing injury, and driving on a suspended license. He was arrested at 2:22 a.m. at Channing Way and Telegraph Avenue and taken to Berkeley Jail for booking. He is scheduled for a pretrial hearing Jan. 27 at the Wiley Manuel Courthouse in Oakland, and is no longer in custody.

There was a disturbance call at 1:38 a.m. at Channing Way and Bonar Street.

Two vehicles were stolen, at 11:10 a.m. in the 2400 block of Ashby Avenue, and at 9 p.m. in the 1500 block of Woolsey Street. … Continue reading »

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Crime

Gun violence makes for busy weekend for Berkeley police

Police responded to two shootings in South Berkeley over the weekend. Locations are approximate and reflect only the block. Image: Google Maps
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Berkeley police handled two significant incidents over the weekend involving gunfire, one that sent a man to the hospital and another that led to the arrest of three 18-year-olds.

Police have been unable to respond to a request for information about the incidents, so Berkeleyside reviewed scanner transmissions to learn, at least preliminarily, about what took place. The information that follows has not been confirmed, but this story will be updated if details are provided by authorities.

Saturday, police responded to a home on Stuart Street, near California Street, after a man called police to report that he had been shot in the leg. Paramedics took the man to Highland Hospital for treatment, but he was not cooperative, according to scanner recordings.

(Update, 6 p.m. A brief statement from police appears at the bottom of this story.)

Continue reading »

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Crime

Berkeleyside blotter: Crime in Berkeley, Dec. 24-30

Selected calls to the Berkeley Police, via CrimeMapping.com. Scroll down for detailed maps. Click the map above for the list. See the map key here.
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This overview of recent crime in Berkeley is based on reports to the Berkeley Police unless otherwise noted. Share photos, videos and tips, about breaking news or neighborhood safety issues, via email at crime@berkeleyside.com or on Facebook or TwitterDon’t assume someone else will alert us. We want to know about issues of concern and rely on readers to help us stay informed.

From Dec. 24-30, there were reports of four robberies18 burglaries13 assaults or batteries, no weapon-involved calls and no sexual assaults, according to CrimeMapping.com. There were also 10 stolen vehiclessix disturbances and 24 auto break-ins or thefts from vehicles reported. No significant incidents were reported by the University of California Police Department (UCPD). The following items represent a sampling of calls; incidents that took place during a range of time are listed unless otherwise noted by the beginning of that time period.

Thursday, Dec. 24

Five vehicles were stolen: at 2:35 a.m. in the 2200 block of Stuart Street; at 3 p.m. in the 2700 block of Dana Street; at 5 p.m. in the 1600 block of Channing Way; at 5 p.m. in the 1000 block of Overlook Road; and at 10 p.m. in the 400 block of Northampton Avenue.

There were three robberies: at 3 a.m. at Ashby and Hillegass avenues; at 10:50 a.m. at Shattuck Avenue and Kittredge Street; and at 6:20 p.m. in the 1400 block of Shattuck Avenue. Police arrested 22-year-old Thomas Cullens in connection with the third incident; he remains in custody at Santa Rita Jail and has already been sentenced.

There was a home burglary at 4 a.m. in the 1900 block of Ward Street.

There was a disturbance at 12:20 p.m. in the 2600 block of San Pablo Avenue.

There was a felony assault or battery at 5:15 p.m. in the 2200 block of Shattuck Avenue.  … Continue reading »

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Drugs tossed from car during CHP pursuit through Berkeley

Photo: Chandler Fitzsimmons
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According to CHP, at around 2.30 a.m., CHP units attempted to stop an Acura Integra for speeding. The car was traveling eastbound on I-80 near Gilman Street. After the Acura failed to stop after taking the Gilman Street exit, CHP began to pursue the car.

“The pursuit went through city streets in Berkeley until the suspect eventually re-entered the freeway from Ashby Avenue and headed westbound on I-80,” CHP said in a release issued around 8:15 a.m.

“During the pursuit, multiple objects were thrown out of the Acura which were later recovered and contained drugs.” … Continue reading »

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Community raises more than $31,000 so far for Berkeley teacher hit by stray bullet

Claire Dugan
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fundraising campaign set up to help a Berkeley elementary school teacher who was critically injured in Richmond on Saturday after being hit by a stray bullet, has so far raised more than $31,000 for her and her partner.

On Jan. 2, Berkeley resident Claire Dugan, a teacher at Cragmont Elementary School, was randomly shot while driving on Cutting Boulevard near 22nd Street a little after 6 p.m., according to Lt. Felix Tan of the Richmond Police Department. Dugan took a bullet in the face and neck, then both she and her partner Lori Dooner were injured in a subsequent collision.

Visit the GoFundMe campaign page for Claire Dugan and Lori Dooner.

The fundraising site explains that the couple, who have a teenage son, need help with medical bills and living expenses “while they recover and fight to overcome the horrific violence that was inflicted on them.” … Continue reading »

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Crime

2 arrested after West Berkeley carjacking, robbery

The pedestrian and bicycle overpass at the north end of Aquatic Park in Berkeley. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Police arrested two men early Monday morning after they reportedly brandished knives and carjacked a motorist in Berkeley’s Aquatic Park.

Berkeley Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats said authorities received a call at 3:10 a.m. Monday alerting them of the incident.

The victim, a man from Hayward, “reported that two suspects brandished knives at him and demanded his property. They also stole his vehicle,” Coats said.

Officers spotted the vehicle as they were responding to the scene, in the northern part of park, and tried to stop it. The driver fled from police with what Coats described as “a wanton disregard for public safety.” … Continue reading »

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Defendant in 2015 Berkeley murder case headed to trial

Christian Sheppard featured
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After hearing sometimes chilling testimony from three witnesses at a preliminary hearing Tuesday in Alameda County Superior Court, Judge Trina Thompson ordered Anthony Durant to stand trial in the October 2015 killing of Christian Sheppard, Berkeley’s only recorded homicide last year.

Sheppard, 24, the father of two young daughters, was fatally shot on the night of Oct. 6 behind the apartment complex at 1611 Russell St. in South Berkeley. He had been playing dice with Durant, then 24, who was charged with murder and unlawful firearm activity after emptying 16 rounds from a semiautomatic handgun into Sheppard’s body. Durant then fled the crime scene and dumped the gun in a nearby yard, according to police. He was arrested Oct. 7 and remains in custody on a no-bail hold.

Read more about 2015’s only Berkeley homicide and about the man who was killed.

Both Sheppard and Durant attended Berkeley schools, had known each other since childhood and grew up in the same South Berkeley neighborhood. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley school teacher shot in the face in Richmond

The car of the elementary school teacher who was shot in the face in Richmond on Saturday. Photo: Rodney Alamo Brown
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A 52-year-old elementary school teacher who was injured by a stray bullet in Richmond on Jan. 2 remains in the hospital in critical condition, according to police.

The woman, who teaches fourth grade at Berkeley’s Cragmont Elementary School, was shot in the face Saturday night as she was driving on Cutting Boulevard near 22nd Street a little after 6 p.m., according to Lt. Felix Tan of the Richmond Police Department. The woman was knocked unconscious by the shot and crashed her car, according to Winifred Hess, a friend. The teacher’s car crashed into another car, injuring a female passenger, said Hess.

“The victim was driving her vehicle with her partner on Cutting Boulevard when she was caught in gunfire between two individuals,” said Tan. “Unfortunately, she was in the middle of it. She was completely innocent.”

The teacher, who lives in Berkeley, is in critical condition, said Tan. However, she appears to be slowly improving, said Hess, who recently spoke to the teacher’s son and to her former husband.

“It’s getting hopeful,” said Hess. “She is able to respond.”

The teacher was on her way to pick up her teenage son when the shooting occurred, said Hess. … Continue reading »

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Crime

Berkeleyside blotter: Crime in Berkeley, Dec. 17-23

Selected calls to the Berkeley Police, via CrimeMapping.com. Scroll down for detailed maps. Click the map above for the list. See the map key here.
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This overview of recent crime in Berkeley is based on reports to the Berkeley Police unless otherwise noted. Please share photos, videos and tips, about breaking news or neighborhood safety issues, via email at crime@berkeleyside.com or on Facebook or Twitter; let us know if you prefer anonymity. Don’t assume someone else will alert us — you may be the only one to get in touch. We want to know about issues of concern and rely on readers to help us stay informed.

From Dec. 17-23, there were reports of six robberies23 burglaries11 assaults or batteries, no weapon-involved calls and no sexual assaults, according to CrimeMapping.com. There were also 15 stolen vehiclesseven disturbances and 29 auto break-ins or thefts from vehicles reported. Two stolen vehicles and two burglaries were reported by the University of California Police Department (UCPD). Click the links for the latest numbers. The following items represent a sampling of calls, and times may be approximate; incidents that took place during a range of time are listed unless otherwise noted by the beginning of that time period.

Thursday, Dec. 17

There were two home burglaries, at 12:11 a.m. in the 2100 block of California Street, and at 10:30 a.m. in the 1900 block of Hearst Avenue.

There were four disturbance calls: at 12:48 a.m. at San Pablo Avenue and Camelia Street; at 5:30 a.m. in the 1700 block of Hopkins Street; at 9 a.m. in the 600 block of Vincente Avenue; and at 9:02 a.m. at Eastshore Highway and Gilman Street.

There was a robbery at 9:27 p.m. in the 1600 block of Ward Street. … Continue reading »

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Crime

Berkeleyside blotter: Crime in Berkeley, Dec. 10-16

Selected calls to the Berkeley Police, via CrimeMapping.com. Scroll down for detailed maps. Click the map above for the list. See the map key here.
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This overview of recent crime in Berkeley is based on reports to the Berkeley Police unless otherwise noted. Please share photos, videos and tips, about breaking news or neighborhood safety issues, via email at crime@berkeleyside.com or on Facebook or Twitter; let us know if you prefer anonymity. Don’t assume someone else will alert us — you may be the only one to get in touch. We want to know about issues of concern and rely on readers to help us stay informed.

From Dec. 10-16, there were reports of seven robberies19 burglaries14 assaults or batteries, no weapon-involved calls and two sexual assaults, according to CrimeMapping.com. There were also 16 stolen vehiclesnine disturbances and 27 auto break-ins or thefts from vehicles reported. A stolen vehicle and one sex crime were reported by the University of California Police Department (UCPD). Click the links for the latest numbers. The following items represent a sampling of calls, and times may be approximate; incidents that took place during a range of time are listed unless otherwise noted by the beginning of that time period.

Thursday, Dec. 10

There were five home burglaries: at 2:30 a.m. in the 2600 block of Benvenue Avenue; at 11:25 a.m. in the 2400 block of Piedmont Avenue; at 3 p.m. in the 2200 block of Durant Avenue; at 9 p.m. in the 1900 block of El Dorado Avenue; and at 11:30 p.m. in the 1500 block of Milvia Street.

There were two disturbance calls, at 6:36 a.m. in the 300 block of Hillcrest Road, and at 11:13 a.m. in the 1600 block of Berkeley Way.

A vehicle was stolen at 4 p.m. in the 1200 block of Sixth Street.

A light-blue-and-black-colored Felt Breed single-speed cycle cross bike valued at $500 was stolen from the Ashby BART station between 7:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., reported the BART Police. The bike had been secured with a U-lock, which was also missing when the theft was discovered.

There was a commercial burglary at 8:50 p.m. in the 2300 block of Telegraph Avenue.  … Continue reading »

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Crime

2015: The year in Berkeley crime, public safety

A memorial has been growing for Christian Sheppard near the site of his fatal shooting earlier this week. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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In 2015, crime looked to be on the upswing in Berkeley compared to the prior year’s significant reductions. If you missed any of Berkeleyside’s most-read and notable crime stories, we sum them up for you here.

A series of attempted child abductions had the community on alert in the fall. No arrests have been made, but authorities did bring in a license plate reader to try to help in the investigation.

Many local residents mourned the death of 24-year-old Christian Sheppard, who was fatally shot in South Berkeley in October. It was the year’s only homicide, but there were several other deaths investigated by police. In December, 22-year-old Jeffrey Engler, a former UC Berkeley student, was found dead in a Cal fraternity house. Alcohol and a fall from what authorities described as a significant height appear to have contributed to his death. The body of a Berkeley woman was found floating near a Richmond park, and authorities described her death as suspicious. And a former Berkeley High School student was fatally shot in Oakland while painting a community mural.

Read more Berkeleyside crime coverage.

There were about a dozen shootings in Berkeley in 2015, though not all of them resulted in injuries. See a map and list of most of the incidents. In November, a teenager was seriously injured during a beating, and police made a number of arrests, but charges have not been filed. … Continue reading »

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Crime

Berkeley police recover 3 loaded guns in car search

Berkeley Police station. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Three men entered “no contest” pleas last week and accepted six-month jail sentences after police recovered three loaded handguns hidden in their vehicle during a car search in Berkeley earlier this month.

On Dec. 6, police stopped the men at about 6:30 p.m. as they were driving near Dwight Way and Acton Street, said Officer Jennifer Coats.

During the stop, police found probable cause to search the sedan, which was occupied by Ulisses Juarez and Orlando Ruiz — 19-year-olds from Concord — and Kelvin Parache, 24, from Bay Point.

Police located a handgun hidden near each of the vehicle occupants. One had been reported stolen out of Fresno. … Continue reading »

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