Former Cal football player charged with 2 felonies after reported attack on cop

A former linebacker with the UC Berkeley football team was charged with two felonies Wednesday after he reportedly attacked a Berkeley police officer over the weekend, according to court papers.

A former linebacker with the UC Berkeley football team was charged with two felonies Wednesday after he reportedly attacked a Berkeley police officer over the weekend, according to court papers.

The Alameda County district attorney’s office charged Joseph Adeyem Wisdom Ogunbanjo, 19, of Berkeley with trying to take a gun from that officer and resisting arrest, according to court documents.

UC Berkeley sophomore Ogunbanjo was suspended from the Cal football team during the fall season, and ultimately was removed from the team altogether, according to Cal officials. They said they could not say when Ogunbanjo was terminated from the team due to student privacy laws.

Police said the attack happened early Sunday on Gayley Road near University Drive on the UC Berkeley campus at about 1 a.m. According to court papers, the officer was sitting in his vehicle when Ogunbanjo walked up to him and “asked me if I had a gun, then asked me if he could drive my patrol vehicle.”


The officer asked him to leave, but instead Ogunbanjo opened the driver’s side door, according to court papers, and “it appeared as if he was going to forcefully pull me out.” The officer pulled out his gun and pointed it at Ogunbanjo as he got out of the vehicle.

“While I waited for cover, Ogunbanjo started to grab me,” then reached for the officer’s gun twice, according to court papers. The officer punched Ogunbanjo in the head two or three times to stop him from taking the gun. During the struggle, Ogunbanjo elbowed the officer in the face, according to police.

Then Ogunbanjo walked over to the vehicle and sat in the driver’s seat “as if he was going to steal” it, according to court papers. The officer hit Ogunbanjo on his arm with a baton two or three times to stop him from leaving, police wrote.

After the baton strikes, Ogunbanjo got out of the vehicle and complied with the officer’s orders to get on the ground, according to court papers. Another officer arrived to help take Ogunbanjo into custody. There was a struggle during the detention, the officer wrote, but police were ultimately able to arrest him.

Ogunbanjo remains in custody at Santa Rita Jail in Dublin, according to court records online. His bail amount was not listed as of publication time. His next court date was not listed either.


Emilie Raguso is Berkeleyside’s senior editor of news. Email: emilie@berkeleyside.com. Twitter: emraguso. Phone: 510-459-8325.