Four men identified by authorities as gang members from Contra Costa County are set to appear in court this week after being charged with a violent, unprovoked attack on a UC Berkeley student in a Telegraph Avenue pizza shop in October.
The group attacked the 21-year-old student when he defended two female friends after the group accosted them, according to court papers. The assault took place Oct. 20, 2019, at about 2:25 a.m. inside Abe’s Pizza at 2340 Telegraph Ave. (near Durant Avenue) less than a block from the UC Berkeley campus.
According to BPD, the gang members attacked the young man when he told them to “leave the girls alone.” BPD described the assault, which was captured on video, as unprovoked.
All four of the men participated in the beating, according to court papers, “by throwing punches, kicks, soda cans, metal chairs and tables.” The injured man was able to run outside and called police. He was treated at the hospital for a concussion, broken nose, head laceration and facial swelling, according to court papers.
Surveillance video from multiple businesses helped police identify the men responsible for the crime, according to court papers. The Antioch Police Department also assisted in the investigation, BPD said. Antioch PD identified all four men as members of a gang called “Family over everything,” or FOE, “which has extensive criminal history in Contra Costa County,” according to court papers.
Antioch PD arrested Marlon Johnson and Brad Williams Jr. on Oct. 23, 2019, police wrote. According to BPD, they “admitted to their involvement in the assault, identified themselves in the surveillance video and stated the assault was ‘unreasonable.'” Police said both men, who live in Antioch, told relatives in jail phone calls that they were wanted “for the fight that happened in Berkeley.”
Detectives found evidence on both men’s cellphones linking all four men to the assault and showing their involvement in the FOE gang, police wrote.
On Dec. 11, police arrested 23-year-old Jordan James of Pittsburg and, at some point prior to that, arrested Mitchell Monroe, 24, of Antioch.
Johnson has been charged by the Alameda County district attorney’s office with assaulting the student with a chair, a table and his fists, according to court papers. Monroe has been charged with attacking the student with a chair. Williams and James have been charged with assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury. All four counts have been charged as felonies.
Johnson, 25, has prior convictions, in 2012 and 2014, for grand theft from a person and burglary. Williams, 23, was convicted in 2015 of being an accessory after the fact. Monroe was convicted in 2013 of possession of a firearm by a minor. All of those convictions, which were felonies, took place in Contra Costa County.
Court papers list four convictions for James, from both Sacramento and Contra Costa counties: unlawful firearm activity in 2017, battery with serious bodily injury in 2013, evading an officer in 2017, and grand theft from a person in 2018.
All four men are out of custody and are scheduled for a pretrial hearing Thursday at the René C. Davidson Courthouse in Oakland, according to court records online.