Berkeley police are reporting several cases where phony $100 bills were passed.
On Monday, a young man – “probably a juvenile” – went into Mail Boxes, etc. at 2342 Shattuck Ave., and asked the clerk to change a $100 bill, said Capt. Bobby Miller of the Berkeley police. When the clerk turned him down, he went outside and approached a man, about to enter the business, asking him for change. The man, a UC Berkeley professor, obliged. But when he went into the store to spend his new bill, the clerk, who had seen the transaction outside, notified police who confirmed that the bill was phony. The professor was not charged.
Police think that on Monday someone may have tried to pay for a $30 pasta at Pasta Shop Fine Foods, 1786 Fourth St., with a counterfeit $100. The suspect first tried to pay for the pasta with an old-looking $100 bill, which the clerk said looked phony and would not accept. Then the suspect pulled out a second $100 bill which, again, appeared counterfeit to the clerk. The customer finally pulled out a $100 bill, which was verified as real, paid for the pasta and left.
Police are also looking into another incident on Monday at Longs Drugs, at 1451 Shattuck Ave., where someone may have attempted to pay for goods with a phony $100. And they are investigating an incident on Sunday at Carniera Don Jose, 2056 San Pablo Ave., where police said a suspect paid for three packs of tortillas with a counterfeit $100 bill.
On Oct. 5, a man was shot twice, once in the left leg and once in the right calf, at San Pablo Avenue and Channing Way. “The victim said he doesn’t know who shot him,” and could not give police a description, Miller said.