Two guns — one stolen, and another in the possession of a felon who was not allowed to carry it — are off the streets after a proactive Berkeley police officer made traffic stops in the same West Berkeley beat over the weekend, authorities report.
Friday, Officer Chris Flores stopped a Lexus for an equipment violation near San Pablo Avenue and Carleton Street shortly after 10 p.m. During a search, he found a loaded revolver hidden on the driver’s-side floorboard, authorities said.
The driver, 32-year-old Walter Green of Berkeley, was arrested in connection with the gun, which BPD learned, through further investigation, had been reported stolen. Green was taken to Berkeley Jail in connection with that offense, too. He was charged with carrying a stolen concealed firearm and carrying a loaded firearm, and entered not guilty pleas Monday, according to online records from the Alameda County Superior Court.
Saturday, Flores stopped a vehicle for expired registration in the 2600 block of San Pablo Avenue — quite close to Carleton — at about 11 p.m. During a search, he found “a loaded and concealed pistol inside of a backpack on the front passenger seat. Additionally, narcotics were found in the vehicle,” police said in a statement.
Police arrested Lamar Cotton, 32, of Richmond, and learned he was a felon, and thus prohibited from having a gun. According to county records online, Cotton is facing a felony for gun possession, and could be sent to prison if convicted.
“The Berkeley Police Department takes great pride in our ongoing efforts to take illegally possessed firearms off the streets and help make our community a safer place,” said BPD in a statement released Tuesday.
No further information about either man — such as custody status, bail or future hearings — was immediately available online due to problems with the sheriff’s office Inmate Locator system.
There have been 59 calls in Berkeley since Jan. 1 involving weapons, though BPD does not break down those calls by weapon type in its public data. Some of the incidents may involve knives, for example, or other varieties of weapon.