A 41-year-old woman has been charged with shooting a gun in the air while threatening a mother and son near Strawberry Creek Park this summer, according to the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office.
Tiffany Payne was arrested Tuesday by Berkeley police at her Bay Point apartment and later charged with criminal threats including unlawfully discharging a firearm with gross negligence, willfully causing a child to suffer and criminal enhancement for using a firearm in the commission of a felony.
According to court documents, Payne approached a 5-year-old boy around 4 p.m. on Aug. 29 and attempted to hand the child suspected marijuana on the 2200 block of Bonar Street in a driveway between two apartment buildings that border Strawberry Creek Park.
The child’s mother confronted Payne, who pulled out a handgun and pointed it at the mother’s head a few feet away, according to the criminal complaint. It says Payne then shot the gun in the air and threatened to shoot the mother, saying “the next one is for you.” Two small children were standing next to the mother when the gunfire occurred.
Berkeley police identified the woman as Payne after speaking with witnesses and reviewing security footage from the area. Detectives arrested her Tuesday during a search warrant of her Bay Point residence. They also recovered a loaded handgun stolen during a robbery in Oakland for which Payne was previously arrested. She was released from custody in that case.
Payne confessed to the shooting on Bonar Street in Berkeley, according to court documents. She also had a warrant for her arrest by the Hercules Police Department in a separate firearm possession case.
Payne is being held at Santa Rita Jail.