This overview of recent crime in Berkeley is based on reports to the Berkeley Police unless otherwise noted. Share photos, videos and tips by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook and Twitter. Don’t assume someone else will alert us. We rely on readers to help us stay informed.
From March 17-23, there were reports of six robberies, 10 burglaries, 16 assaults or batteries, four weapon-involved calls and three sexual assaults, according to CrimeMapping.com. There were also 18 stolen vehicles, 10 disturbances and 33 auto break-ins or thefts from vehicles reported. A robbery, two burglaries and a vehicle theft were reported to the University of California Police Department (UCPD). Arrested or charged individuals in this blotter are presumed innocent. Find our March 17-23 round-up below.
Recent public safety incidents
FIGHT ON BART The BART Police responded Wednesday at about 5:30 p.m. to the downtown Berkeley station for a report of a fight in progress on a Richmond-bound train. When they got there they were told one man had punched another passenger, also male, twice in the face. A witness followed the assailant as he left the station and helped police find him. The victim identified that man as the person who had punched him, and he was arrested and taken to Berkeley Jail. The victim was evaluated by medical personnel at the scene and released.
ALERT TO LOCAL BUSINESSES The Berkeley and Oakland chambers of commerce are warning their members and other local businesses about two men they say have been misleading local businesses to try to sell services and get information. According to the Oakland Chamber: “These individuals have been aggressively visiting and calling businesses selling memberships and promoting a wide array of services including text marketing and credit card payment solutions, then asking for credit card information over the phone to set up new accounts. After collecting credit card information, it is unclear how they are using the data.” The Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce says it has no affiliation with the the group. Said a Berkeley Chamber of Commerce rep, the men are “attempting to defraud Berkeley businesses while falsely representing themselves as representatives of the Berkeley Chamber.” Police were contacted but, according to the Berkeley Chamber, said this wasn’t a crime.
See Berkeleyside’s crime section for the latest public safety coverage.
The week in review: March 17-23
Thursday, March 17
A vehicle was stolen at 2 p.m. in the 2600 block of Ellsworth Street.
There was a home burglary at 3:30 p.m. in the 2300 block of Parker Street.
There was a felony sexual assault at 10 p.m. in the 2600 block of Warring Street.
Friday, March 18
There was a commercial burglary at 1 a.m. in the 1500 block of Walnut Street.
Four vehicles were stolen: at 4 a.m. in the 600 block of Gilman Street; at 9:45 a.m. at Hearst and La Loma avenues; at 10:30 p.m. in the 1200 block of Bonita Avenue; and at 11 p.m. in the 1500 block of Stuart Street.
There were three disturbance calls: at 7:54 a.m. in the 100 block of Bolivar Avenue; at 11 a.m. in the 2000 block of Essex Street; and at 1:37 p.m. in the 1100 block of Glen Avenue.
A BART patron reported that his or her white 21-speed mountain bike was stolen from the racks in front of the North Berkeley station between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. The bike had been secured with a U-lock.
UCPD responded at about 3:15 p.m. to a vehicle theft in the 400 block of Kula Gulf Way, at University Village in Albany.
UCPD responded to Unit 1 at about 6:10 p.m. for a burglary report.
Saturday, March 19
There was a home burglary at 1 a.m. in the 2800 block of College Avenue.
There were three robberies: at 2:15 a.m. at Shattuck Avenue and Addison Street; at 3:24 a.m. in the 2100 block of Seventh Street; and at 11:20 p.m. in the 1400 block of Henry Street.
Three vehicles were stolen: at 7:25 a.m. in the 700 block of Allston Way; at 10 p.m. in the 1600 block of Julia Street; and at 10:30 p.m. at La Loma and Le Conte avenues.
There was a disturbance at 2:20 p.m. in the 2500 block of Ridge Road.
UCPD responded to the 2700 block of Hearst Avenue at about 6 p.m. for a burglary.
There was a misdemeanor sexual assault at 8:30 p.m. in the 1600 block of 63rd Street.
Sunday, March 20
There was a home burglary at 12:07 a.m. in the 2800 block of Cherry Street.
Five vehicles were stolen: at 1:30 a.m. in the 2800 block of Cherry; at noon in the 2500 block of Le Conte; at 12:55 p.m. in the 2000 block of Blake Street; at 12:59 p.m. in the 2600 block of Milvia Street; and at 10 p.m. in the 1600 block of Fairview Street.
There were four calls involving a gun or other weapon: a brandishing report at 9:30 a.m. in the 1900 block of Hearst Avenue; a brandishing call at 11:45 a.m. in the 3000 block of Adeline Street; a weapons call with no further information at 3 p.m. at Dwight Way and Dana Street; and the same type of call at 8:26 p.m. at California Street and Alcatraz Avenue.
There was a felony sexual assault at noon in the 1200 block of Parker Street.
There was a robbery at 9:20 p.m. in the 3000 block of Shattuck Avenue.
There was a felony assault or battery at Cedar and Chestnut streets at 11:15 p.m. Police arrested 30-year-old Gary Pedro on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and criminal threats, both felonies. He is no longer in custody, having posted bond for $60,000 bail, but is scheduled for a readiness hearing April 15.
Monday, March 21
There was a commercial burglary at 3:34 a.m. in the 2000 block of University Avenue.
Four vehicles were stolen: at 6:45 a.m. and 9 a.m. in the 1200 block of Second Street; at 6 p.m. in the 2400 block of Second; and at 10:30 p.m. in the 1900 block of San Antonio Avenue.
There was a disturbance at 3:10 p.m. in the 3000 block of Claremont Avenue.
There were two home burglaries at 9 p.m. in the 2200 block of Prince Street, and at 10 p.m. in the 2600 block of Hillegass Avenue.
Tuesday, March 22
Berkeleyside broke the news locally that a 23-year-old man wanted in connection with a sexual assault on the UC Berkeley campus was arrested by authorities in Tennessee over the weekend after a report of a domestic dispute. UCPD later said Sheldon Harley Johnson had been wanted in connection with a 2011 case where a female UC Berkeley student was the victim of a sexual assault and robbery near Haviland Grove. Read more on Berkeleyside.
There was a felony assault or battery at 1:25 a.m. in the 1000 block of University Avenue. A man authorities said appeared to be under the influence of alcohol is reported to have stabbed two acquaintances, but they were expected to survive. Authorities identified the man as 33-year-old Tristan Chaix of Berkeley. Chaix is scheduled for a preliminary hearing, where a judge determines whether there is enough evidence to send the case forward to trial, April 22. Chaix told police he “should have killed everyone there,” according to court papers. He remains in custody on $165,000 bail. Read more on Berkeleyside.
There were two robberies, at 8:10 a.m. at University and Shattuck, and at 11:21 p.m. in the 2400 block of Bancroft Way.
UCPD let the community know about two men who tried to rob someone of his backpack outside Café Mediterranean, 2475 Telegraph Ave., March 22 at 1:40 p.m. Two men approached the 33-year-old victim and demanded his backpack, using threats of violence. The man ran into the cafe to escape. He called UCPD, who responded but could not find the robbers. They were both described as Hispanic men in their 20s with a light build. One was 5 foot 10 with brown hair wearing a black cap and a white sleeveless shirt, and carrying a black hooded sweatshirt. The other was 5 foot 8 with brown “slicked back” hair, wearing a denim jacket. (This item first appeared in last week’s blotter for timeliness. See the original Nixle alert; sign up for updates.)
There was a disturbance call at 8:20 a.m. in the 1700 block of Hopkins Street.
A vehicle was stolen at 11 a.m. in the 1600 block of Chestnut Street.
There was a home burglary at 7:30 p.m. in the 1700 block of Woolsey Street.
Police arrested Heather Keately, 25, and 47-year-old Jerome Handley at 8:30 p.m. in Hayward on suspicion of identity theft and a slew of other violations. Keately has been released but Handley remains in custody with a bail of $100,000. They are scheduled for a preliminary examination Friday, April 8.
Wednesday, March 23
There were four disturbance calls: at 2:19 a.m. at Allston Way and Milvia Street; at 8:10 a.m. in the 900 block of San Benito Road; at 9:09 a.m. in the 2000 block of San Pablo Avenue; and at 12:07 p.m. in the 1800 block of Spruce Street.
Regarding the last incident, BPD told us that “a homeless person pried open a small door that leads to a crawl space under a home on the 1800 block of Spruce St. When the trespasser was confronted by the owner he fled, leaving behind all his property.”
Police arrested Charles Hughes, 27, at about 3:15 a.m. in the 1000 block of 65th Street on suspicion of identity theft, parole violation and other violations. He remains in custody without bail and is scheduled for a preliminary examination Friday, April 8.
There were two home burglaries, at 5 p.m. in the 3300 block of King Street, and at 9:20 p.m. in the 2600 block of Dana Street.
The California Highway Patrol reported the arrest of a man spray-painted gold on suspicion of driving under the influence and hitting several other vehicles on the highway in Berkeley. The CHP’s Oakland office wrote, “This evening we arrested a 21 year old man for hit and run and driving under the influence after he hit 3 cars on EB 80 in Berkeley this evening. An off duty police officer witnessed the act and followed the suspect to the Central off ramp where the suspect’s wheel fell off, forcing him to stop. While enroute, we received a description of the suspect as being ‘gold.’ Well, the description was certainly correct as the suspect was covered head to toe in gold spray paint!” His name was not released.
Berkeley public safety data resources
- The Berkeley Police Department incident log on CrimeMapping and CrimeView Community
- The UCPD crime log, also posted in brief on CrimeMapping, and UCPD crime alerts
- Local Crime News lists arrests of Berkeley residents (not by agency)
- Nixle public safety alerts, by email and text, from BPD and UCPD
- The Berkeley Police Department’s “calls for service” heat map
- Learn about what info BPD can release to the public.
Please note: These 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. 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.
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