This is a partial list of recent crimes in Berkeley based on information from the Berkeley Police Department, followed by a snapshot of BPD activity this week. See also the BPD’s weekly calls for service spreadsheet and the San Francisco Chronicle’s regularly published list of arrests in Berkeley. For other sources of information on crime in Berkeley see Community CrimeView and

Identity Theft/Fraud – 900 Block of Euclid Avenue
On Tuesday, March 13, a community member in the 900 block of Euclid Avenue reported that she was the victim of identity theft. The woman told the officer that she had received a call from an online payment service that a suspect had used her name and Social Security number to attempt to purchase a total of $321 in sporting goods on line. The BPD officer documented the crime and provided her with some information about identity theft as well as a case number.

Stolen Vehicle Recovered – 1300 Block of Peralta Avenue
On Tuesday, March 13, at 9:08 a.m., a BPD patrol officer did a records check of a 1995 red Nissan Pathfinder that was parked in the 1300 block of Peralta Avenue. The records checked revealed that the Nissan was reported stolen in San Francisco on February 25, and had been entered into the Stolen Vehicle System (SVS). The BPD officer had to have the car towed and requested that the information related to the car was taken out of SVS. The officer then documented and completed the necessary paperwork. 

Residential Burglary – 1100 Block of Spruce Street
Sometime between Monday, March 12 at 8:00 p.m. and Tuesday, March 13 at 8:27 a.m., an unknown suspect or suspects burglarized a home in the 1100 block of Spruce Street. The home is being renovated and the burglary included items from the owner as well as two construction companies. Among the items stolen were tools, jackhammer, air compressor, computer and audio equipment. There were no signs of forced entry that the patrol officer could determine, so one or more doors may have been left unlocked or unsecured.

Commercial Burglary via Door Pry – 700 Block of Gilman
At about 9:20 a.m. on Wednesday, March 14, a woman who owns a business with her husband in the 700 block of Gilman called to report a burglary. She told the beat officer that sometime between Tuesday, March 13 at 9:00 p.m. and Wednesday, March 14 at 9:00 a.m., an unknown suspect pried open the front door of the business and took a clock from the west wall near the top of the staircase. The clock was a 36” diameter, round black unknown brand clock that was approximately 30 years old.

City Liability – Fallen Tree – 1100 Block of Hearst Street
On Wednesday, March 14 at approximately 11:45 a.m., BPD received two calls from community members regarding a tree that may have fallen on a vehicle in the 1100 block of Hearst Street. BPD officers are often called to document such civil matters such as this. The beat patrol officer responded and reports that he saw that the tree was down and that there was a motorcycle laying on to its side in the street. From the position of the tree, it did not appear that the tree knocked over the motorcycle. The officer noted that the motorcycle’s rear tire was backed against the curb with the front wheel turned to the left, the east. The officer stated that it was most likely that the large, fast moving, stream of excess running storm water at the curb knocked the motorcycle off balance, causing it to fall.

Identity Theft / Fraud – 2400 Block of San Pablo Avenue
On Monday, March 12 at about 7:07 p.m., a community member in the 2400 block called to report that she was the victim of fraud/identity theft. The woman victim had received a letter from Amazon and JC Penney stating possible fraudulent activity under her name. She soon discovered that about $500 of unauthorized charges were associated with her name from several retailers. The suspect or suspects also opened credit card accounts to more retailers such as WalMart and Neiman Marcus. The victim told the BPD officer that she does not know how the suspect(s) obtained her personal information. The BPD officer documented the crime and sent it to the BPD Property Crimes/Fraud detail.

Driving Under the Influence – College and Alcatraz Avenues
On Tuesday, March 13 at 10:28 p.m., a BPD officer responded to a non-injury collision at the intersection of College and Alcatraz Avenues. The driver of the car, a 42-year old San Francisco woman displayed objective symptoms of impairment. The officer could smell an odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from the driver. The driver also had blood shot and watery eyes, slow, slurred speech and admitted to consuming alcohol prior to driving. The officer conducted several Field Sobriety Tests (FSTs) which the woman could not successfully complete. The woman’s BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) was recorded as .103 and .099 on the Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS) device. Based on her driving, her objective symptoms of impairment, and the FSTs, the BPD officer arrested the SF woman suspect and booked her into the BPD Jail for violation of CVC 23152(a) Driving Under the Influence.

Residential Burglary via Unlocked Door – 2600 Block of Sacramento Street
On Monday, March 12 between 11:00 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. a residential burglary occurred to the residence of 2625 Sacramento Street. A BPD officer responded to document the crime and investigate. The officer and resident determined that the suspect or suspects came in through an unlocked door. The resident told the officer that his Sony Vaio laptop had been stolen. The officer requested that a member of BPD’s CSI team come to the scene and look for anything of evidentiary value such as latent fingerprints.

St. Patrick’s Day DUI checkpoint
The Berkeley Police Department Traffic Bureau, in cooperation with the Alameda County “Avoid the 21” program, will be conducting a DUI checkpoint on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17. The checkpoint will be located at the intersection of San Pablo Avenue and Jones Street between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 1:30 a.m. Checkpoints are placed in locations that have the greatest opportunity for achieving drunk or drugged driving intervention and provide the greatest safety for the community and public safety personnel.

Officers will be contacting drivers passing through the checkpoint. The officers will be looking for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment. Drivers caught driving impaired can expect jail, license suspension, and insurance increases, as well as fines, fees, DUI classes, court probation and other expenses that can exceed $10,000.

Snapshot of BPD activity
Between Monday, March 12 at 1:15 a.m. and Thursday, March 15 at 2:10 p.m., BPD officers responded, investigated and documented 18 welfare checks of individuals throughout the city.

Between Monday, March 12 at 3:30 p.m. and Thursday, March 15 at 5:24 p.m., BPD responded, investigated and documented 56 uncertain 911 calls or 911 hang ups throughout the city. The calls range from kids playing on the phone to fax machines to dialed in error trying to call another country and so on.

Between Monday, March 12 at 10:49 a.m. and Thursday, March 15 at 4:12 p.m., BPD officers responded to 22 complaints about possible abandoned vehicles throughout the city. The officers researched the vehicles through computer systems for status such as a stolen vehicle. The calls for service were documented and as appropriate, would be followed up in 72 hours.

Lance Knobel (Berkeleyside co-founder) has been a journalist for nearly 40 years. Much of his career was in business journalism. He was editor-in-chief of both Management Today, the leading business magazine...