Suspicious packages prompt street closures

Two suspicious packages were found near the UC Berkeley campus on Oct. 28, prompting police to shut down city streets and evacuate businesses and campus buildings as bomb squad technicians investigated.

Both packages were eventually deemed harmless.

The first package was discovered by a business at 11:55 a.m. The business reported receiving an unexpected and suspicious package, causing the evacuation of nearby buildings, Berkeley police spokeswoman Jennifer Coats said. The bomb squad determined the package to be harmless.

Shattuck Avenue was shut down in both directions from Bancroft Way to Durant Avenue until about 4 p.m.

The second package was reported Monday afternoon near Bancroft and Telegraph avenues, authorities said. It was searched and found empty, the university reported. During the investigation, multiple UC Berkeley buildings, including Sproul Hall and Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union, were evacuated.

Three injured in hit-and-run

An Oakland woman was arrested on suspicion of felony hit-and-run and other charges after hitting three visually impaired people at a Berkeley intersection and then driving away, police said.

Berkeley police on Oct. 24 afternoon arrested Sherri Carbone Cruz, 53, after the three pedestrians, who were walking at the intersection of Shattuck Avenue and Haste Street, were hit, Berkeley police Capt. Erik Upson said. The pedestrians suffered minor to moderate injuries, but did not need to go to the hospital, Upson said.

Upson said Cruz drove away in her black Chevy Camaro. Police spotted the car at Channing Way and Shattuck Avenue not long after the collision, detained Cruz and later discovered that she had been involved in another collision while fleeing the scene of the first collision.

The driver in the second crash suffered minor injuries, police said.

The pedestrians in the first collision were in a crosswalk but it was not known if the driver knew they are pedestrians visually impaired.

Shortly after 5 p.m, Cruz was arrested on suspicion of felony hit-and-run, possession of methamphetamine, bringing a controlled substance into the jail, and felony driving under the influence, Upson said. During booking, police discovered a small bag containing a white powdery substance, which later tested positive for the presence of amphetamine, police said.

Danse Lumiere holding "Dance On Center"

A new series of dance and performance will be offered downtown by Kathryn Roszak's Danse Lumière starting at 2 p.m. Nov. 3 at Osher Studio 2055 Center St.

The series is a chance to see behind the scenes in the creation of dance and theater in an up-close setting.

The series opener will include excerpts a new interpretation from "About the Rite," celebrating the 100th anniversary of "The Rite of Spring," and "Shubertiana," from Danse Lumiere's recent premiere of "Secrets on the Way."

Admission is $20 general, $10 students and seniors. Seating is limited. Tickets are available at danceoncenter.brownpapertickets.com or at the door. Details and reservations: 510-233-5550 or kdance@sonic.net.

Mendehall sextet show at Jazzschool

Pianist, composer and educator Eddie Mendenhall and his sextet will perform selections from the release "Cosine Meets Tangent" and jazz standards at 8 p.m. Nov. 1 at The Jazzschool, 2087 Addison St.

Tickets are $15 general, $12 students and seniors, available at jazzschool.org/event/eddie-mendenhall-sextet/.

Grant applications for UC Berkeley fund

UC Berkeley is now taking applications for grants from the Chancellor's Community Partnership Fund, a $253,000 pot of money for arts, culture, community safety, economic development, environmental stewardship and education projects in Berkeley. The fund makes grants to 20 to 25 projects each year.

Applications are due by Dec. 9.

A workshop for applicants is set for Oct. 30 at the Berkeley Skydeck, 2150 Shattuck Ave. For more information on the workshop and the application process visit http://communityrelations.berkeley.edu or call 510-643-5299.

-- Chris Treadway