The Hillegass Avenue resident accused of shooting a repairman Monday should have known the worker on sight since the man had been in his apartment with him doing repairs just five days earlier, according to a police statement in the case.
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office charged 43-year-old Giancarlo G. O’Hara with assault with a semiautomatic firearm with several aggravating factors Wednesday, court records show. He was initially arrested on suspicion of attempted homicide.
On Sept. 13, the victim, a maintenance supervisor, “completed maintenance repairs inside O’Hara’s studio apartment. O’Hara was present while the maintenance work was being completed and was aware of what the victim looked like,” according to a declaration of probable cause filed by Berkeley police.
Two days later, O’Hara made a request online for more maintenance work “and indicated on the form that it was OK for maintenance to enter the apartment without notice,” according to the statement. O’Hara then called the supervisor — it’s unclear whether he dialed a general maintenance number or reached out to the man directly — and left a voicemail about the requested repairs, according to the statement.
A different worker went to O’Hara’s apartment on Monday morning to do the work, knocking several times and trying to open the door with a key to no avail, police said. That worker then called the supervisor who went to O’Hara’s unit, knocked, announced he was there and, when there was no answer, opened O’Hara’s door with a master key, police said.
O’Hara fired as soon as the supervisor opened the door, missing his face but hitting him with splinters when the bullet hit the doorframe, police said. O’Hara then came out into the hallway and shot man in the leg as he fled, police said.
Both O’Hara and the supervisor called police to report the shooting, with O’Hara telling police he believed he had shot a burglar, police said. But the declaration highlighted the fact that O’Hara had met the man five days prior and knew what he looked like.
Since O’Hara allegedly shot first when the man was still in the hallway, police believed “that O’Hara had his gun in his hand and was aiming it at the door while the victim knocked,” according to the statement.
Police recovered a handgun and a spent shell casing from inside O’Hara’s apartment, and another casing from the hallway, they said.
O’Hara was scheduled for arraignment Wednesday morning. His case had not been called as of shortly before noon. Court records did not immediately name any attorney or public defender as having filed an appearance on his behalf. O’Hara remained in custody as of Wednesday morning.
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