This overview of recent crime in Berkeley is based on reports to the Berkeley Police unless otherwise noted. Share photos, videos and tips by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook and Twitter. Don’t assume someone else will alert us. We rely on readers to help us stay informed.
From March 31 to April 6, there were reports of six robberies, 19 burglaries, 11 assaults or batteries, three weapon-involved calls and two sexual assaults, according to CrimeMapping.com. There were also eight stolen vehicles, 21 disturbances and 28 auto break-ins or thefts from vehicles reported. A sex crime, a burglary and three vehicle thefts were reported to the University of California Police Department (UCPD). Arrested or charged individuals in this blotter are presumed innocent. Find our March 31 to April 6 round-up below.
Recent public safety news
DISCONNECTING PHONES ON THE BART TRACKS Tuesday at about 11:30 p.m. officers responded to both Berkeley BART stations for a man walking on the tracks while intoxicated and disconnecting emergency phones along the way, the BART Police reported. “Power was shut down on both track ways, and medical personnel staged as officers eventually managed to safely detain the suspect in the underground tunnel/track way between the two stations. Officers determined the suspect was too intoxicated to care for himself, in addition to his trespassing on the track way, and placed him under arrest for both violations. As a precaution, medical personnel cleared the suspect before he was booked into the Berkeley City Jail. Due to this incident, trains were delayed for approximately 30 minutes; nothing unusual was located on the incident track way.” The man’s name was not released.
The week in review: March 31 to April 6
Thursday, March 31
There were two robberies, at 12:25 a.m. at Dwight Way and Benvenue Avenue, and at 8:45 p.m. in the 1000 block of Gilman Street.
There were four home burglaries: at 7 a.m. in the 100 block of Hillcrest Road; at 7:35 a.m. in the 900 block of Parkside Drive; at 12:35 p.m. in the 2400 block of Dwight Way; and at 10 p.m. in the 1600 block of Cornell Avenue.
There were two disturbance calls, at 8:30 a.m. in the 1500 block of Martin Luther King Jr. Way, and at 9:50 a.m. in the 1500 block of Woolsey Street.
A thief stole a blue women’s mountain bike while it was cable locked at the Ashby BART station between 7:20 a.m. and 4:45 p.m., according to the BART Police.
A vehicle was stolen at 7 p.m. in the 2600 block of Dana Street.
Friday, April 1
There were two home burglaries, at midnight in the 2600 block of McGee Avenue, and at 3:45 a.m. in the 1800 block of Scenic Avenue.
There were four disturbance calls: at 3:27 a.m. in the 2100 block of Shattuck Avenue; at 5:47 a.m. at Sixth Street and University Avenue; at 1:05 p.m. in the 1700 block of Eighth Street; and at 10:10 p.m. at Julia and Sacramento streets.
Regarding the call at about 3:30 a.m., the owner of The Sandwich Spot told Berkeleyside a man snuck into the shop and “while the food was being delivered he locked himself in the bathroom and did drugs all night.” When the owner, Bill Armanino Jr., opened in the morning, “I had no idea anyone was in there and the door was locked. I had to break open the door and found the man passed out. I called the cops ASAP and they said they were busy. The man woke and charged me as I was at the door we got in a foot chase” through downtown. The man cut into the UC Berkeley campus and Armanino tried to get UCPD to help with the chase, but was unable to garner interest. Armanino said he was frustrated about the lack of responsiveness by both departments: “If my female manager got there before me I’m not sure what would have happened.” BPD said the case was investigated as trespassing and a report was written by the handling officer.
There was a misdemeanor sexual assault at 6:30 a.m. at University Avenue and Bonar Street.
There was a commercial burglary at 6:35 a.m. in the 600 block of Harrison Street.
UCPD arrested two people on suspicion of burglary at 2:12 p.m. in the 2100 block of Channing Way: 25-year-old Sofia Hargrove and 22-year-old David Molina. According to a statement released by UCPD: “UCPD received a report of two suspicious people climbing on to a second floor balcony at the Manville Apartment complex. UCPD officers arrived at the complex and encountered a female exiting an apartment dragging a laundry basket filled with items burglarized from the apartment. The male suspect was located outside also in possession of stolen items.” Hargrove was also wanted on a warrant from Martinez and Molina was on probation. They were taken to Berkeley Jail for booking. Both remain in custody without bail at Santa Rita Jail and are scheduled to be sentenced May 11.
Police responded to a hit-and-run crash at Dana and Channing around 5:30 p.m. A person in a wheelchair was hit, according to a Berkeleyside reader. No further information was immediately available.
A reader asked Berkeleyside about what appeared to be significant police activity at about 10 p.m. on Sacramento Street near Julia. Police said it was a traffic stop. No further information was provided.
An 18-year-old woman reported being raped on Grizzly Peak at 11:30 p.m. Friday, according to UCPD. The case is under investigation. No further details have been released. Berkeleyside has asked UCPD for additional information. (Update, April 28: UCPD said this case remains under investigation: “The victim in this case is not affiliated with UC Berkeley, and at this time, there is reason to believe the suspects also are not affiliated with the campus.” No further information was released.)
Saturday, April 2
There were six disturbance calls: at 12:07 a.m. in the 2300 block of Durant Avenue; at 12:15 a.m. in the 2500 block of Benvenue; at 1:08 a.m. in the 2100 block of Allston Way; at 10:51 a.m. in the 1300 block of Delaware Street; at 3:57 p.m. in the 600 block of Neilson Street; and at 8:15 p.m. at Grant and Hearst avenues.
There were two home burglaries, at 8 a.m. in the 1200 block of Ordway Street, and at 3 p.m. in the 2100 block of Curtis Street.
Four vehicles were stolen: at noon in the 1300 block of Oxford Street; at 4 p.m. in the 2200 block of Hearst Avenue; at 5:15 p.m. at Delaware and Grant streets; and at 8 p.m. in the 1900 block of Virginia Street.
There was a robbery at 3:55 p.m. in the 2300 block of Telegraph Avenue.
There was a felony assault or battery at 6:50 p.m. in the 2400 block of Telegraph. Police arrested Gabriel Mazza, 37, on suspicion of felony battery causing serious bodily injury and several misdemeanors. He is no longer in custody but is scheduled for an attorney and plea hearing April 28.
Someone stole a golf cart at about 7:35 p.m. from Alumni House, according to UCPD, but it was recovered.
Police arrested Jalen Carr-Harris, 20, at about 10 p.m. after a narcotics-related incident at King and 63rd streets. He was arrested on suspicion of felony identity theft and two misdemeanors. He remains in custody at Santa Rita Jail and was scheduled for a hearing, and to be appointed an attorney, today, April 21.
Someone reportedly brandished a weapon at 10:40 p.m. in the 2000 block of Durant.
Sunday, April 3
There were three disturbance calls: at 12:23 a.m. in the 2100 block of Martin Luther King Jr. Way; at 9:50 a.m. at Shattuck Avenue and Center Street; and at 7:10 p.m. in the 1500 block of Ninth Street.
There was a second-response call at 2:02 a.m. in the 1800 block of Rose Street.
There was a home burglary at 1:45 p.m. in the 1200 block of Hearst Avenue.
A reader asked Berkeleyside about what appeared to her to be a heavy police response near Sports Basement in South Berkeley at about 3:45 p.m. BPD said officers were trying to handle an uncooperative motorist who was possibly driving under the influence, as well as a chase nearby that resulted in multiple arrests, according to the watch commander. (Berkeleyside first reported this on Twitter.)
There was a commercial burglary at 5:38 p.m. in the 1800 block of Fourth Street: Police are looking for two men they say stole an iPad from the Berkeley Apple store. The men entered the store, at 1823 Fourth St., and left with the iPad. According to a police statement, “At this point we don’t believe the theft is related to any ongoing thefts from Apple Stores in the Bay Area. Based on the quality of the video we hoped to enlist the community’s help in nabbing this duo.” The department can be reached at 510-981-5900, or by email at email@example.com. (This item first appeared in last week’s blotter for timeliness.)
A reader told Berkeleyside about a chase and crash on Dohr Street on Sunday night: “there was a high speed police chase in my neighborhood and a crash into my neighbor’s parked car when the driver attempted to turn from Ward onto Dohr at high speed. The driver’s car was smoke filled and looked like it could catch fire. Police pulled the driver out. I heard a police officer say that the guy must have been going 80 mph up Carleton. Happened around 10:30 or 11:00 pm.” According to police, “Officers attempted to stop the involved [driver] for a number of a vehicle code violations. The driver collided with a park car. He was later arrested for driving a motor vehicle under the influence and narcotics related offenses.” Police identified the driver as a 40-year-old man of Kelseyville, California. Berkeleyside could not confirm whether he has been charged, so his name has not been published.
There was an arson call at 11:48 p.m. in the 700 block of Harrison Street.
Monday, April 4
There was a disturbance at 7:52 a.m. in the 2000 block of Allston Way.
There were three home burglaries: at 10 a.m. in the 1700 block of University Avenue; at noon in the 600 block of Addison Street; and at 4 p.m. in the 2100 block of Acton Street.
A vehicle was stolen at 10 a.m. in the 1400 block of Spruce Street.
There was a misdemeanor sexual assault at 10:35 a.m. at Delaware and Eighth streets.
There were three robberies: at 3:45 p.m. in the 1000 block of University; at 5:57 p.m. in the 2400 block of Ellsworth Street; and at 9:34 p.m. in the 2800 block of Telegraph.
Two Berkeley middle schoolers escaped a possible attempted child abduction, authorities said, after a man in a parked car beckoned them to come over and said he would drive them home. Janet Levenson, the principal of Berkeley’s Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School, emailed the school community with information on what she termed “suspicious activity reported by King students at Colusa and Marin.” Read more on Berkeleyside.
Someone reportedly brandished a weapon at 11:58 p.m. at Bancroft Way and Dana Street.
Tuesday, April 5
There was a call involving a gun or other weapon at 12:16 a.m. at Channing Way and Telegraph.
There were three disturbances: at 4:59 a.m. at Shattuck and Haste avenues; at 11 a.m. in the 2800 block of Adeline Street; and at 6:33 p.m. in the 1600 block of Russell Street.
There was a home burglary at 10 a.m. in the 2400 block of Piedmont Avenue.
A thief stole a black Cannondale Quick 6 Hybrid 18-speed bike from the racks at the North Berkeley BART station. According to the BART Police: “The bike was secured with a padlock on 4/5 at 1000 hours and when the victim returned at 2100 hours, the bike and lock were gone.” (Concerned about bike theft? Consider registering your bike online.)
Wednesday, April 6
There were three home burglaries: at 4 a.m. in the 2600 block of College Avenue; at 7:26 a.m. in the 200 block of Hillcrest Road; and at 1:30 p.m. in the 1500 block of Chestnut Street. Police arrested Christopher Jones, 27, in connection with the incident on College. He remains in custody and is scheduled for a hearing to have an attorney appointed April 27, according to online records from the sheriff’s office.
There was a commercial burglary at 10 a.m. in the 600 block of Harrison Street.
Two vehicles were stolen, at 10:20 a.m. in the 700 block of Ashby Avenue, and at 8:30 p.m. in the 1100 block of Fresno Avenue. Police arrested 22-year-old Thomas Cullens in connection with the first incident. He was scheduled for a hearing to revoke his probation Thursday, April 21.
There was a disturbance at 12:20 p.m. in the 1300 block of University Avenue.
At about 2 p.m., reader Timothy Craven said there were “Lots of police and ambulances in front of West Berk Wells Fargo. Any idea what’s going on?” BPD told Berkeleyside a man tried to rob Wells Fargo with a demand note. When police responded, they found he was an elderly man who appeared to have medical and psychological problems. He was taken for an evaluation and was not arrested, because he had no weapons and there were no actual threats, BPD said. (Berkeleyside first reported this on Twitter.)
Reader Siciliana Trevino asked Berkeleyside just before 2:45 p.m. about what appeared to be an injury accident at Oxford/Fulton and Allston Way. According to police, a young adult female motorcyclist lost control, hit the median and was ejected. She was taken to the hospital but expected to survive. (Berkeleyside first reported this on Twitter.)
Police arrested Dario Lambur-Castillo, 53, on suspicion of oral copulation with a child under 10 and lewd and lascivious conduct with a child under 14. He remains in custody without bail. He is scheduled for a pretrial hearing May 19. Berkeleyside will ask the district attorney’s office for additional information.
The BART Police responded at about 5:30 p.m. to the downtown Berkeley station for a report of a fight in progress on a Richmond-bound train. When they got there they were told one man had punched another passenger, also male, twice in the face. A witness followed the assailant as he left the station and helped police find him. The victim identified that man as the person who had punched him, and he was arrested and taken to Berkeley Jail. The victim was evaluated by medical personnel at the scene and released. (This item first appeared in a prior blotter for timeliness.)
UCPD responded to “fraudulent claims of an active shooter on campus” at about 5:10 p.m. The case is under investigation. (Update, April 28: According to UCPD, “officers received a report of social media posts related to a possible active shooter on the north side of campus. Officers searched the area and determined there were no signs of related activity. We received no other credible information to verify the claims made in the postings. The case is under investigation.”)
Someone stole a black-and-silver-colored Marin men’s hybrid bike, valued at $800, while it was U-locked at the North Berkeley BART station between 8:30 a.m. and 7 p.m., according to the BART Police.
Berkeley public safety data resources
- The Berkeley Police Department incident log on CrimeMapping and CrimeView Community
- The UCPD crime log, also posted in brief on CrimeMapping, and UCPD crime alerts
- Local Crime News lists arrests of Berkeley residents (not by agency); BPD’s arrest log and booking log (new as of April 2016)
- Nixle public safety alerts, by email and text, from BPD and UCPD
- The Berkeley Police Department’s “calls for service” heat map
- Learn about what info BPD can release to the public
- Find your area coordinator to ask about neighborhood issues (but don’t forget to tip Berkeleyside, too!)
Please note: These items represent a sampling of calls; incidents that took place during a range of time are listed unless otherwise noted by the beginning of that time period. New reports may be added to CrimeMapping in an unpredictable manner, so numbers may increase in the days after this report. This post does not reflect every call. See recent Berkeley crime blotters.
Berkeley police make arrest in double shooting (04.20.16)
Berkeley police seek help identifying shooting suspect (04.19.16)
Man assaulted with metal bat in South Berkeley (04.17.16)
Apple store theft alert, threats of shooting — over stolen steak — at Berkeley Bowl, more (04.15.16)
Police seek man after robbery of 70-year-old woman (04.14.16)
Authorities: Man admitted to killing, bargained with God, in secret recording by police (04.14.16)
Witnesses to fatal Berkeley attack did not see killer’s face (04.13.16)
Berkeley post office protesters cleared out in early morning raid (04.12.16)
Ex-girlfriend of accused killer: ‘I feel scared to this day’ (04.11.16)
Police arrest 1 after staff at Berkeley McDonald’s attacked (04.07.16)
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