A Berkeley man has been arrested after allegedly assaulting another man with pepper spray during a fight over parking, authorities said Monday.

Thursday, Jan. 23, shortly before 7 p.m., the two men got into a verbal altercation over parking on Delaware Street near Walnut Street, said Officer Jennifer Coats, Berkeley Police Department spokeswoman, in response to an inquiry from Berkeleyside.

“As the victim was seated in his vehicle, the suspect sprayed a substance in the victim’s face,” said Coats, via email. Police believe the substance was pepper spray. 

The suspect fled, and was detained by police a short time later.

The man was identified as Philip Wright, 54, of Berkeley. He was arrested on suspicion of assault with a caustic chemical. He was booked into the Berkeley Jail but no longer appeared to be in custody as of Jan. 27.

The victim, a 30-year-old Berkeley man, was treated at the scene by the Berkeley Fire Department.

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Emilie Raguso (former senior editor, news) joined Berkeleyside in 2012 and covered politics, public safety and development until her departure in 2022. In 2017, Emilie was named Journalist of the Year...