Police are looking for a woman who shoved an 85-year-old to the ground and rushed off. Image: BPD

A community member who saw a video of a violent, unprovoked assault in Berkeley in September helped tip off authorities to the assailant’s identity, which led to her arrest, police said Tuesday.

Last week, the Berkeley Police Department asked for the community’s help to find a woman with an overloaded shopping cart who had — for no apparent reason — forcefully shoved an 85-year-old pedestrian to the ground as she walked in downtown Berkeley with a relative on Sept. 23. The woman suffered serious injuries and was taken to the hospital as a result.

As part of its outreach, the department released a security video showing the assault. (A Berkeleyside post of that video has been viewed nearly 4,500 times on YouTube. Other media sources also made it available.) 

Officer Byron White, a Berkeley Police spokesman, said a community member who saw the video called police with information about the woman who was depicted.

“Detectives were able to further investigate, leading to the identity of the suspect,” he said via email Tuesday in response to a request for an update about the case from Berkeleyside.

Police have identified this woman as Carol Freeman. Image: Berkeley Police
Police have identified this woman as Carol Freeman. Image: Berkeley Police

Early Saturday, shortly before 12:30 a.m., officers found the woman they say was responsible for the attack. Officers located her in Civic Center Park on Martin Luther King Jr. Way between Allston Way and Center Street.

Police identified the woman as 58-year-old Carol Freeman of San Francisco.

She was arrested on suspicion of felony battery, battery on the elderly and causing great bodily injury during the commission of a felony.

Freeman is being held at Berkeley Jail with a bail of $150,000 and is scheduled for arraignment Tuesday, Oct. 14, at 2 p.m. at the Wiley W. Manuel Courthouse in downtown Oakland.

No update on the victim’s condition has been released.

Police ask for help after random violent assault of 85-year-old in downtown Berkeley (10.07.14)

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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...