One man dead after south Berkeley fight

By Chris Nichols Daily Planet Staff
Thursday June 27, 2002

A man was stabbed to death Wednesday afternoon during a fight between him and another man on Haste Street near Telegraph Avenue in south Berkeley. The victim was rushed to Highland Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at approximately 5:45 p.m., a nursing supervisor for the hospital said. 

The Berkeley Police Department was sparse on details immediately following the incident. “There was a fight between two males. One was stabbed. The other one is in jail,” said Lt. Bud Stone. “That’s all we know.” 

Dozens of residents gathered on Haste Street behind police lines as investigators combed the scene. Large patches of blood were smeared on the sidewalk in front a UC Berkeley cooperative on the south side of the 2400 block of Haste Street.  

According to investigators, the fight took place in the middle of the street about half a block from Telegraph Avenue and carried over to the sidewalk. 

The death is the latest in a series of recent violent crimes in south and west Berkeley. Onlookers said after Wednesday’s incident that they do not always feel safe walking around south Berkeley, especially at night. 

“I don’t feel safe anywhere past north Berkeley. The cutoff point is probably by Vine and Cedar Streets. Anything south of there I don’t feel safe,” said one Berkeley resident who wished to be identified only as Lilia. 

According to a third-year UC Berkeley student who wished to be identified only as Will, safety is an issue there. “I still walk around at night by myself but some friends of mine told me that some people get mugged around here,” he said. 

Violent crimes, though, are not that common in the neighborhood, said Alexander Salvador and Edgar Ramos of Berkeley’s First Presbyterian Church, located nearby on Haste Street. 

City Councilmember Kriss Worthington, Distict 7, said that Wednesday’s stabbing is part of rising crime rates not just in Berkeley but around the nation. “We’re concerned with the economy being down in the dumps that crime is on the rise. We have to reinvent some community involved policing to combat this issue,” he said.