Tuesday August 23, 2005




A sorely inebriated man took the wheel of his SUV Sunday morning and proceeded on a rampage starting shortly before 4 a.m., inflicting serious damage to 15 parked cars before he crashed his mini-tank into a phone pole about 5:05 a.m. 

Berkeley police spokesperson Officer Joe Okies said that police were alerted by a report of an SUV crashing into a pole in the 2100 block of Essex Street. 

The 24-year-old driver had abandoned the wreck by the time officers arrived, but a search quickly located the blotto blitzer. 

Somewhere along the way, the SUV lost a wheel, accounting for the shower of sparks callers reported from the careening vehicle as it battered its way along Russell and Wheeler streets. 

Berkeley Unified School District spokesperson Mark Coplan, who lives on Wheeler near Ashby, said that after the car lost the wheel, “You could hear it from three blocks away. It was like a scraper going down the street. By 4 a.m. there was a line of cops taking reports from car owners. The dude missed my car, but he hit my neighbor’s car.” 

The fellow was booked on multiple hit and run charges plus the deuce rap. 


Students beware! 

Berkeley police and agents of the state board of Alcoholic Beverage Control have teamed up to catch underage drinkers who hope to dupe tavern-keepers with their cleverly forged IDs. 

Officer Okies said that Friday night action actions resulted in a total of 56 citations. Two others were booked into the city pokey. 

A search of one south campus bar turned up six minors with fake IDs inside, while officers cited eight others who were trying to get in. 

“We’ll be doing stepped up enforcement throughout opening week and rush week,” said Okies. The enhanced enforcement is funded by a grant from the ABC. 


Domestic, violent 

Summoned by a phone call report of a threatened incident of domestic violence, Berkeley police arrived at a residence near the corner of Acton Street and Channing Way Wednesday afternoon to find the threatened woman still on the phone with the caller. 

While an officer was talking to the woman, the 18-year-old caller appeared and approached the officer and the threatened woman, in the process of which he dropped a loaded shotgun and a knife from his coat. 

A brief flight ensued before the suspect was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence and two concealed weapons charges. Officers also discovered outstanding warrants against the fellow as well. 


Rat pack heist 

A gang of four or five felons ranging in ages between 15 and 20 confronted a man outside Iceland in the 2800 block of Milvia Street and robbed him of his money, a cell phone and his XBox games just before 7 p.m. Saturday. 

One of the fellows was wearing a “spark” (a removable gold tooth cap) and a basketball shirt emblazoned with the number 20, said Officer Okies. 

They were long gone ’ere police arrived. 


Lone gunman 

A young man with a gun robbed a woman of her purse, cell phone, cash, credit cards and ID about 9:20 p.m. Sunday in the 2400 block of Woolsey Street.?