Man charged with attempted murder after metal bat attack in Berkeley

A 51-year-old man has been charged with attempted murder after authorities say he used a metal bat to attack a younger man on Eighth Street in West Berkeley last week.


Update, Sept. 18: The Berkeley Police Department has released video of the brutal attack that resulted in the filing of attempted murder charges earlier this month against 51-year-old Dennis Daniels. The video is extremely violent. Proceed with an abundance of caution. According to booking records online, Daniels remains in custody without bail. His plea hearing is set for Wednesday.

Original story, Sept. 8: A 51-year-old man has been charged with attempted murder after authorities say he used a metal bat to attack a younger man on Eighth Street in West Berkeley last week.

The victim pleaded with the older man to stop the beating, which was caught on video, police wrote in court papers, but the violence didn’t end until other people noticed what was happening. The man implicated in the attack has multiple violent convictions in the Bay Area dating back decades, court papers show.

Police identified the assailant as Dennis Daniels. Daniels, who is on probation, has no permanent address but officers arrested him on the sidewalk beneath the Gilman Street overpass the morning after the attack.


The beating took place Wednesday just before 8 p.m., BPD said in a prepared statement. A man in his 20s was standing near an RV on Eighth Street, mid-block between Gilman and Harrison streets, when he came into contact with Daniels, according to BPD.

The two men had a conversation, then the younger man walked over to an RV to get something, according to BPD.

It was at that point that Daniels walked up behind the younger man and struck him in the head with the metal bat, BPD said.

The younger man fell to the ground but Daniels continued to strike him “multiple times with full swings,” according to charging documents.

Police wrote that they could hear the younger man screaming for mercy, “calling Daniels by his name and begging for him to stop hitting him,” when they reviewed security camera footage of the assault.


According to BPD, Daniels hit the man 10 times on his head, back, arms and legs. A large cut in the back of his head required staples to fix. He was also assessed for a possible broken arm and cuts on his leg.

BPD said Daniels left the area when other people noticed what he was doing.

Police have not released a motive for the attack.

BPD arrested Daniels on Gilman Street on Thursday just before 8 a.m. On Friday, the Alameda County district attorney’s office charged him with attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, and numerous criminal enhancements., according to charging documents.

Daniels has felony convictions in separate cases for robbery (2010), assault with a deadly weapon (2009) and attempted assault with a deadly weapon (2000), according to court papers. He was sent to prison after all three convictions and has two strikes, according to court papers.


Daniels, a laborer, remains in custody at Santa Rita Jail and is scheduled to enter a plea Sept. 23 at the East County Hall of Justice in Dublin.

Emilie Raguso is Berkeleyside’s senior editor of news. Email: emilie@berkeleyside.com. Twitter: emraguso.