OAKLAND -- Two suspected East Oakland gang members were arrested on the Laney College campus Monday morning after two guns, including a loaded .40-caliber pistol, were found in their backpacks, police said.

The men told police that they were students at the school, but school officials could not confirm that Monday.

The arrests were made by officers with the Violent Crime Unit, a three-week-old team formed by Capt. Ersie Joyner III to deal with gangs and violent suspects in the far east area of Oakland.

Arrested were Reginald Battle, 20, of Oakland, who police said had a loaded .40-caliber pistol in his backpack, and Christian Williams, 21, of Oakland, who police said had an unloaded Tech-9 assault pistol in his backpack as well as a 30-round loaded magazine for the weapon.

Police said both men are suspected members of a violent East Oakland gang that frequents the area of 64th Avenue and Foothill Boulevard.

Sgt. Randy Brandwood, the unit commander, said they received information that an individual had a gun on the campus. Both Battle and Williams were known to the unit, and they were confronted just before 10 a.m. after police said they were observed leaving a class.

Police confirmed that Battle is on both parole and probation for gun and robbery convictions and Williams is on probation for burglary.

Brandwood said police first found the gun in Battle's backpack, and then the assault weapon in Williams' backpack.

Patrol officers from West Oakland assisted the Violent Crime Unit.


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Battle was arrested for on suspicion of violating parole and probation, and on suspicion of several gun offenses, including being a felon in possession of a firearm, having a firearm with the serial number removed and having a firearm on a school campus.

Williams was arrested on suspicion of violating probation, and on suspicion of possession of an assault weapon, possession of a concealed firearm and having a firearm on a school campus. Both were being held without bail.

Brandwood said that since the unit was formed three weeks ago, more than two dozen felony arrests have been made, including for attempted murder, carjacking and robbery, and eight firearms have been seized.