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 firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook or Twitter; let us know if you prefer to be anonymous. Don’t assume someone else will alert us — you may be the only one to get in touch. We very much want to know about issues of neighborhood concern and rely on our readers to help us stay informed.
From Aug. 20-26, there were reports of 10 robberies, 15 burglaries, 12 assaults or batteries, five weapon-involved call and three sexual assaults, according to CrimeMapping.com. There were also 15 stolen vehicles, 10 disturbances and 31 auto break-ins or thefts from vehicles reported. Two burglaries were reported by the University of California Police Department (UCPD). These numbers are subject to change. 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 by the beginning of that time period.
Thursday, Aug. 20
There was a robbery at 1:15 a.m. at Woolsey and Ellis streets.
A vehicle was stolen at 8 a.m. in the 2300 block of Bancroft Way.
There were two home burglaries, at 8:30 a.m. in the 2500 block of California Street, and at 10:30 a.m. in the 2300 block of Ashby Avenue.
A victim reported to the BART Police the theft of a white-, yellow- and silver-colored Giant brand hybrid bike, valued at $340, while it was cable locked at the Ashby BART station between noon and 5 p.m.
From the BART Police: An officer responded to the North Berkeley station after a citizen reported seeing what appeared to be a live grenade in the Franklin Street satellite parking lot at about 6:15 p.m. Aug. 20. The officer checked the device and determined that it appeared to be a live explosive. With the help of Berkeley police officers, local residents were evacuated from the immediate neighborhood and a safety perimeter was established. The station was closed as a precaution, and the U.C. Berkeley Police Bomb Squad responded as well. Members of the bomb squad inspected the device and determined it was not an explosive: It was a toy. Shortly thereafter the station was reopened and residents were allowed to return home. Read more on Berkeleyside. (This item first appeared on prior blotters for timeliness.)
There was a commercial burglary at 6:20 p.m. in the 1800 block of Fourth Street.
Friday, Aug. 21
There was a commercial burglary at 2:53 a.m. in the 1300 block of McGee Avenue.
There was an arson call at 8 a.m. in the 1300 block of Carrison Street.
There was a home burglary at 2:40 p.m. in the 200 block of Rock Lane.
There was a robbery at 5:23 p.m. in the 3100 block of College Avenue.
There was a felony sexual assault at 7 p.m. in the 2200 block of Milvia Street.
A vehicle was stolen at 8 p.m. in the 1000 block of Spruce Street.
There was a second-response call at 10:44 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 22
There were three home burglaries: at midnight in the 1800 block of Bonita Avenue; at 8:30 a.m. in the 1000 block of Miller Avenue; and at noon in the 1600 block of Fifth Street.
There were two disturbance calls for noise, at 12:08 a.m. in the 2700 block of Channing Way, and at 1:37 a.m. in the 2700 block of Ellsworth Street.
There was a misdemeanor sexual assault at 1:41 a.m. at College Avenue and Derby Street.
There was an arson call at 5 a.m. in the 1200 block of Second Street.
There was a commercial burglary at 5:04 a.m. in the 1500 block of University Avenue.
There were two disturbance calls, at 5:35 p.m. in the 3200 block of Idaho Street, and at 9:18 p.m. in the 1100 block of Carleton Street.
There were two robberies, at 6:16 p.m. at Sacramento and Russell streets, and at 9:28 p.m. in the 2900 block of San Pablo Avenue.
There was a vice call at 8:25 p.m. in the 1700 block of San Pablo Avenue.
At about 9 p.m., officers responded to the 1100 block of Carleton Street after receiving multiples reports of gunfire, with a large group of juveniles leaving the area, said Officer Byron White, a BPD spokesman. At the scene, officers learned there was a party at a nearby residence and that someone fired several shots into the air. A Berkeley teenager, Emauj Roos, who was arrested two days later after being found by police with a loaded gun has been charged in connection with the shooting.
Three vehicles were stolen: at an unlisted location at 9:30 p.m.; at 10 p.m. in the 1200 block of Queens Road; and at 11 p.m. at Fourth and Gilman streets.
Sunday, Aug. 23
There were two home burglaries, at noon in the 1100 block of Grizzly Peak Boulevard, and at 12:30 p.m. in the 1800 block of Berkeley Way.
A vehicle was stolen at 1:50 p.m. in the 2100 block of Fourth Street.
Officers took a man into custody Sunday afternoon after chasing two suspects through several West Berkeley neighborhoods acting on information supplied by local residents. According to Lt. Andrew Rateaver of the BPD, the two suspects were involved in a theft and may have fled in, then crashed and abandoned, a car in the area of Second Street south of Cedar Street. Starting at around 4:20 p.m. police officers pursued the suspects on foot in the area surrounded by Fifth, Jones, Cedar and Fourth streets. Read more on Berkeleyside. The man arrested was later identified as 37-year-old Jesse Chamberlin. He was arrested on suspicion of evading police, hit-and-run, burglary, vehicle theft and other violations. He remains in custody at Santa Rita Jail and is being held without bail. He is scheduled for arraignment Sept. 24 at the Rene C. Davidson Courthouse in downtown Oakland.
There was a robbery at 5 p.m. in the 1000 block of Ashby Avenue.
There was an arson call at 9:59 p.m. at Spinnaker Way and Marina Boulevard.
Monday, Aug. 24
There was a robbery at 12:13 a.m. at Durant Avenue and Fulton Street. The Berkeley Police Department received a report of a strong-arm robbery at the intersection of Durant Avenue and Fulton Street. A 53-year-old woman was walking in the area when a man approached her and “a struggle ensued for her purse,” according to a statement released by UCPD. The man managed to get the purse away from the woman. He was last seen getting into a truck that drove eastbound on Durant and turned south onto Ellsworth Street. Police searched the area but could not find the man, who was described as a black man in his 20s, 5 feet 9 inches tall, wearing a dark jacket and blue jeans. (This item first appeared on prior blotters for timeliness.)
Three vehicles were stolen: at 10 a.m. in the 1200 block of Cedar Street; at noon at Blake and Acton streets; and at 4:50 p.m. in the 1600 block of Edith Street.
A man was reunited with his bike — which had been stolen from his home on Addison Street, near Strawberry Creek Park, between Saturday evening and Sunday morning — thanks to an alert resident who recognized the bike in the neighborhood after seeing a post on social network Nextdoor. The owner is still hoping to find a second identical bicycle that was also stolen from his home over the weekend. Read more on Berkeleyside.
There was a commercial burglary at 4:30 p.m. in the 2000 block of Bancroft Way.
BART Police officers responded to a report of an unconscious man on a train at the North Berkeley station. The officers found the man and determined he was intoxicated. He was arrested and booked into the Berkeley City Jail on suspicion of public intoxication.
There was a call involving a gun at 7:07 p.m. at Seventh Street and Channing Way. Police arrested three teenagers with a loaded handgun after receiving a report about a suspicious vehicle in West Berkeley. Two juveniles were arrested along with 18-year-old Emauj Roos, who was later charged with shooting into the air outside a party on Carleton over the weekend. Read more on Berkeleyside.
There was a felony sexual assault call at 9 p.m. in the 3100 block of Sacramento Street.
There was a disturbance at 10:07 p.m. in the 1500 block of Harmon Street.
Tuesday, Aug. 25
There were three robberies: at 1:28 a.m. at Telegraph and Ashby avenues; at 1:37 a.m. at Haste and Fulton streets; and at 4:35 p.m. at University Avenue and Bonar Street.
Someone stole a leaf blower valued at $200 from a locked UCPD cage in Unit 3 (Ida W. Sproul Hall) sometime between 8:30 a.m. Monday and 8 a.m. Tuesday. (via UCPD)
There was a home burglary at 9 a.m. in the 3000 block of Tremont Street.
Five vehicles were stolen: at 9:41 a.m. in the 100 block of Spinnaker Way; at 7 p.m. in the 1000 block of Virginia Street; at 7:20 p.m. in the 1200 block of University Avenue; at 7:30 p.m. at Hearst and Le Roy avenues; and at 8 p.m. in the 1100 block of Sutter Street.
Someone reportedly brandished a weapon at 6:45 p.m. in the 2100 block of Kittredge Street. There were two other calls involving a gun or other weapon, at 6:50 p.m. at Seawall Drive and University Avenue, and at 10:14 p.m. in the 2100 block of Essex Street. Police arrested David Thompson, 63, in connection with the Essex Street call on suspicion of several violations related to the possession of a firearm and ammunition. He is no longer in custody and is scheduled for further pretrial Sept. 22.
Wednesday, Aug. 26
There was a second-response call at 12:02 a.m. in the 2600 block of Telegraph Avenue.
There were two disturbance calls, at 3:45 a.m. in the 2500 block of Durant Avenue, and at 10:04 p.m. in the 1800 block of University Avenue.
A vehicle was stolen at 10 a.m. in the 1700 block of Curtis Street.
At 11:40 a.m., the driver of a tan Odyssey traveling westbound on Carleton near Mathews Street (east of San Pablo Avenue) lost control of her van and hit three parked vehicles, resulting in one of the parked cars colliding with a house. The driver was taken to the hospital for a medical issue, according to BPD. Ryan (@shiznito on Twitter) shared two photographs with Berkeleyside, which first posted about this incident on Facebook. He was told the van driver had a seizure prior to the crash.
There was a call involving a gun or other weapon at 3:49 p.m. in the 1300 block of Rose Street.
There was a burglary, via a loading dock, sometime between 10 a.m. Monday and noon Wednesday, according to UCPD. Someone stole two carpet cleaners and a floor buffer from Unit 3 with a total value of $4,500. The case remains under investigation.
There were two home burglaries, at 7:07 p.m. in the 2600 block of College Avenue, and at 8 p.m. in the 2400 block of Piedmont Avenue.
There was a robbery at 10:10 p.m. at Dwight Way and Hillside Avenue. UCPD released a statement about it: At 10:13 p.m., UCPD received a call regarding a man with a black gun near the Clark Kerr Campus at Dwight and Hillside. As UCPD units responded, Berkeley officers broadcast a report of a robbery with a gun at the same location. Two victims, both UC students, were robbed of their backpacks. The victims were not physically injured during the encounter. Officers searched the area but were unable to locate the suspects, who were described as men ages 19-24 wearing black hooded sweatshirts.
Other recent incidents
WEST BERKELEY BURGLARY ALERT There has been a pattern of residential burglaries in the Westbrae neighborhood, police said in a recent Nixle alert. From May to Aug. 13, there were 15 burglaries and two attempted burglaries. According to a police statement, “This series has been one of the department’s highest priorities.”
Many of the burglaries are happening during the day. Police said entry was made in about 40% of the crimes “through unlocked doors/windows. There is likely more than one suspect or group. In some burglaries, personal electronics have been targeted, in others, silver has been taken.”
More from the police statement:
We have had some developments
After reviewing video surveillance footage from a burglary on the 1200 block of Peralta Avenue, patrol officers recognized one of the juvenile suspects from a previous investigation. Patrol officers immediately followed up with the juvenile’s family members and confirmed the juvenile’s involvement. The following day (August 9th), the juvenile was arrested for the burglary (BPD Case #15-45970). The juvenile and his associates appear to be connected to at least four burglaries throughout North Berkeley.
On August 13th, a burglar broke into a home while the residents were still inside. After being confronted by the residents, the burglar fled in a shiny red or burgundy truck—raised/lifted like a 4-wheel drive. Officers are on the lookout for this vehicle. The suspect knows he was seen, and may be avoiding the area (BPD Case #15-47274). The suspect was described as a white male, 25-27 years old, with an unshaven blonde beard, long blonde hair pulled back, wearing an orange shirt with a black hooded top and black sweatpants.
In the past two weeks since this incident, there have been no other burglaries in this area.
In light of these burglaries, plainclothes surveillance as well as uniformed patrols have been stepped up in the area for some time. We are actively sharing relevant information across our patrol teams to ensure officers are aware. We have submitted evidence, (e.g. fingerprints, blood) for forensic examination and identification and have requested expedited processing from the crime lab.
We have attended community meetings to share updated information, answer questions, and recommend crime prevention measures. Additionally, at your request, we will come to your home or business and conduct a crime prevention assessment and provide recommendations.
See the full statement on Nixle.
See the Berkeley Police Department’s crime reports on CrimeMapping.com. See the list of calls to UC Police at Berkeley, which are also posted in brief on CrimeMapping. See also Local Crime News’ regularly published list of arrests of Berkeley residents. Other sources of information on crime in Berkeley include the Police Department’s CrimeView Community and CrimeMapping.com. The Berkeley Police Department also posts “calls for service” spreadsheets — containing more data — online for those who would like to see more. New reports may be added to CrimeMapping in an unpredictable manner, so numbers may increase in the days after this report. This post does not reflect every call. See recent Berkeley crime blotters here.
Berkeley man charged in Oakland murder case (09.10.15)
Serious Berkeley crime skyrockets in first half of 2015 (09.10.15)
3 teens arrested after Berkeley robbery, assault (09.09.15)
Teen charged in shooting at Berkeley party on Carleton (09.09.15)
Police arrest man after bathroom peeping report (09.08.15)
Police release new footage of person of interest in fatal shooting of Berkeley musician (09.09.15)
Op-ed: Militarization of Berkeley police doesn’t help community safety (09.04.15)
Pharmaca in North Berkeley held up at gunpoint (09.03.15)
Berkeleyside blotter: Crime in Berkeley, Aug. 13-19 (09.01.15)
Op-ed: Give police the tools they need while preserving Berkeley’s values (08.31.15)
Police: Man groped kids at Strawberry Canyon Pool (08.28.15)
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