Tuesday August 10, 2004

Gunshots Hit Homes, Cars on Ashby  

A volley of 20 to 30 gunshots struck two dwellings and three cars Friday night shortly before 10:30 along the 1200 block of Ashby Avenue—just a block away from the scene where Mario “Tiptoe” Jackson became Berkeley’s first 2004 homicide victim. 

No one was injured in the attack. 

Berkeley Police spokesperson Officer Joe Okies said detectives are investigating the potentially lethal attack to see how it may be connected to the July 19 murder. 

Police also received reports of gunshots fired into a dwelling in that same block shortly before 2 a.m. that morning. 


Officer Injured in Assault by Runaway Driver  

A Berkeley Police officer sustained minor injuries while struggling with a driver who crashed a stolen Lexus sedan after Berkeley police tried to stop him for failure to yield the right of way Sunday afternoon. 

Officers had initially given chase, then abandoned it after the Lexus took off at high speed through city streets. 

Moments later the Lexus was spotted at 61st and Market Street, where it had come to a stop after crashing into a light standard. 

A BPD officer arriving at the scene soon found himself engaged in a struggle with the driver, and during the fracas sustained an arm cut that required stitches. 

A foot pursuit followed, and when officers captured the 30-year-old driver they discovered he was wanted for parole violations. 

Lark Q. Shivers was charged with a full suite of criminal violations, and if convicted may spend a considerable time in the custody of the State of California. 

The injured officer was treated and released. 


Swastika Scrawled on Berkeley Alternative School  

Vandals spray-painted a five-by-five-foot swastika on the wall of the Berkeley Alternative School at 2701 Martin Luther King Jr. Way sometime before noon on July 31. 

A Public Works Department crew was summoned to the scene and covered the offensive symbol with a coat of fresh paint. 

Police Log Multiple Robberies 

Berkeley officers have investigated a variety of robberies during the past two weeks, including: 

• A strongarm purse snatching at San Pablo Avenue and Channing Way on July 29 in which a woman purse-snatcher battered her victim. 

• An attempted purse snatch at Dwight Way and Etna Street later that same day. 

• A 3 a.m. Aug. 1 attempted armed robbery at Benvenue Avenue and Stuart Street where a gunman clad all in black, topped by a three-quarter-length black leather jacket and a black ski mask, backed off an attempt to rob a male victim. 

Less than 15 minutes later the same bandit accosted a couple at College Avenue and Parker Street and stole a camera after first trying to force them into their residence. 

• An older man shoved a pedestrian outside the Barnes and Noble store on Shattuck Avenue later in the day and made off with his books. 

• Two victims were robbed at Channing Way and Fourth Street shortly after midnight on Aug. 2. One victim lost cash and the other his car. 

• A pair of cyclists attempted to grab a woman’s groceries as she walked near Fifth and Delaware streets. 

• A Fourth Street pedestrian reluctantly handed over his iPod to a gang of four or five juveniles who threatened him with a beating should he have failed to comply. A police search of the area nabbed four suspects, including one they charged with receiving stolen property. 

• Confronted early Sunday by a bandit who approached him from behind, jammed something hard against his skull and demanded money, a pedestrian strolling Ashby Avenue near the corner of Ellsworth Street complied. The suspect fled, sight unseen. 

• Three juveniles jumped a man around 3:30 p.m. Sunday in Ohlone Park, making off with his cash. 


Brawler Swings, Hits Cop 

When a Berkeley officer attempted to break up fisticuffs on Telegraph Avenue at Durant Street on July 31, one of the brawlers mistakenly landed a punch on the officer, earning himself a more serious charge. 


Diners Greeted by Disgusting Sight 

Saturday night diners at a Shattuck Avenue restaurant may have lost their appetites after a 59-year-old Berkeley man stood outside the front window and proceeded to expose and gratify himself. 

Police booked him for indecent exposure and probation violation.