Police discovered a man who had been beaten with a baseball bat at 2020 Durant on Friday morning. Photo: Frances Dinkelspiel
Police discovered a man who had been beaten with a baseball bat at 2020 Durant on Friday Aug. 29, 2014. Photo: Frances Dinkelspiel

A violent assault in a senior living complex in downtown Berkeley on Friday morning left a man in critical condition, according to authorities. Berkeleyside broke the story, then updated it as we gathered new information.

Update, Sept. 9, 4:15 p.m. Berkeley Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats said, as far as she knows, the 72-year-old man who was beaten remains in the hospital. Coats also confirmed that 69-year-old Lawrence Landis was arrested in connection with the assault. He was charged with attempted murder with enhancements for causing great bodily injury on the elderly and the use of a weapon during the commission of a felony.

Update, Aug. 30, 4:15 p.m. The man who was assaulted in Berkeley early Friday morning is still alive and has emerged from a coma, said Berkeley Police Lt. Dave Frankel.

Update, 10:20 a.m. Scanner audio recordings from Friday morning reveal that shortly before 1 a.m., Berkeley police were called to 2020 Durant Ave., near Milvia Street, after receiving multiple reports that a man was “yelling and screaming,” according to the recordings.

Police responded to the scene and quickly took 69-year-old Lawrence Leland Landis into custody, according to the Alameda County sheriff’s department inmate locator. An officer took Landis to the police station for assessment.

Officers on Durant requested a “code 3” emergency response from the Berkeley Fire Department for a man who was “severely beaten.”

One officer reported the man was breathing but appeared to have been beaten with a baseball bat.

Paramedics took the man to Highland Hospital for treatment, according to the recordings.

Berkeley Police have declined to confirm the name of the man who was arrested, citing the early stages of the investigation.

“We do not want to release any information prematurely that could jeopardize our investigation,” said Berkeley Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats.

(Coats did release a statement at 12:18 p.m. confirming that police responded to the 2000 block of Durant at 12:49 a.m. Friday for a report of a man “yelling and making threats.” Police arrived shortly thereafter and heard a loud disturbance inside an apartment. They made contact with one man at the apartment, and found a second man who was “severely injured,” according to the release. The injured man was taken by ambulance to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. The other man was arrested on suspicion of attempted homicide. Coats declined to confirm the identity of the man who was arrested. She said investigators “do not believe this was a random attack.” Coats said no further information can be released at this time because it could “possibly hinder the investigation.”)

Police ask anyone with information about the incident to call the Homicide Detail at 510-981-7541, or Bay Area Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

Update, 9:30 a.m. According to the Alameda County sheriff’s department’s online records, 69-year-old Lawrence Leland Landis was arrested by Berkeley police on suspicion of attempted homicide early Friday morning.

Berkeley Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats said she could not confirm that Landis was arrested in connection with Friday morning’s assault, as the investigation is still in its early stages. She said she is in touch with investigators to determine what information can be released at this time.

According to a description posted online, the address where the assault took place is Stuart Pratt Manor. It is a 44-unit senior community that was built in 1969.

Original post, 8:20 a.m. A man was sent to the hospital early Friday morning with life-threatening injuries after being badly beaten with a baseball bat, authorities said.

Berkeley Police responded to a disturbance call at 2020 Durant Ave. near Milvia Street on Friday in downtown Berkeley in the early morning hours, according to Berkeley Police Chief Michael Meehan.

When officers arrived at the senior living apartment complex, Stuart Pratt Manor, they heard yelling and screaming from one of the units.

A man answered the door and police discovered another man who had been badly beaten with a baseball bat. The first man was arrested and is being held in Berkeley Jail, according to Meehan.

Berkeleyside reporter Emilie Raguso contributed to this story.

Man arrested after attempted Berkeley homicide with baseball bat (04.28.14)
8-time felon arrested after attempted homicide (05.23.13)

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Tracey Taylor is co-founder of Berkeleyside and co-founder and editorial director of Cityside, the nonprofit parent to Berkeleyside and The Oaklandside. Before launching Berkeleyside, Tracey wrote for...