BERKELEY -- Three UC Berkeley students and a 38-year-old man were victimized at gunpoint in a spate or robberies that have marred areas at or near the campus since Tuesday, police said.
Four robberies occurred, and guns were used in three of them. A fourth involved a confrontation between one of the thieves and somebody trying to stop him.
The most recent one occurred around 12:30 a.m. Sunday morning on Derby Street near Willard Park, Berkeley police Lt. David Frankel said. A man and woman, both students, were approached at gunpoint by a person and robbed of camera supplies, an iPhone and wallet, he said.
One suspect was described by police as a Hispanic male between 18 and 20 years old, approximately 5 feet 6 inches or 5 feet, 7 inches tall with a medium build. Police said he had a gray hooded sweatshirt, a gray beanie and a black handgun and that he jumped into an older two-door brown- or rust-colored car driven by a another man. The driver also was 18-to-20 years old with a slightly bigger build with a light-colored hoodie, Frankel said.
That robbery came less than 48 hours after a 38-year-old man was robbed early Thursday morning, UC police said.
The 38-year-old was sitting on the steps in front of Urban Outfitters in the 2500 block of Bancroft Way when a person approached him around 2:04 a.m., pointed a gun and demanded his property, police said. The suspect then struck the man with the gun and took off with the victim's laptop, police said.
Police described the suspect as a black man, between 5 feet, 8 inches and 5 feet, 10 inches tall. He was between 180 and 200 pounds, with a medium to dark complexion. Police said he was wearing a black beanie and a dark blue jacket and fled east on foot. Berkeley and UC police were unable to find him.
The man who was robbed had minor injuries from getting hit with the gun, police said.
In between those robberies, two other men conspired to steal an iPad from the Cream, an ice cream shop located at 2399 Telegraph Avenue, police said. In that robbery, police said a man walked into the ice cream shop around its closing time of midnight, grabbed the iPad and fled to a waiting car. Two employees of the store chased him, and one of them was punched as the suspect broke away and got into a car driven by a woman.
The man suspected of grabbing the iPad was described by police as a Hispanic male, approximately 22 years old and 5 feet, 11 inches tall. Police said he had a medium build and was wearing a 49ers jersey, bluejeans, and brown hat with ear flaps. The woman was described as Hispanic and in her 20s, approximately 5 feet, 2 inches tall with a thin build. She was wearing a blue jacket and driving a white- or cream-colored sedan with tinted windows, police said.
On Tuesday, a 21-year-old female student was robbed at gunpoint in the 2500 block of Benvenue Avenue around 8:30 p.m. by two teenagers. Police said she was walking in the area and noticed a vehicle idling. As she walked by it, a male and female ran up behind her, pushed her up against the building, demanded her property and assaulted her. They forcibly took her cell phone and a wallet, police said. The woman suffered injuries that police said were minor.
The male suspect was approximately 14 years old and the female slightly older, police said. He was black, had a thin build, a shaved head and was wearing a maroon hoodie and black pants. The female was black, slightly taller and was wearing a pony tail, a black leather jacket and bluejeans, police said. The two got away in a beige 2000 Jeep, possibly a Cherokee, police said.
Police urged students and others on or near the campus to utilize the Night Safety Services, which can be utilized by calling 510-642-9255 or to walk in groups while avoiding dark, deserted areas. Anyone with information about these robberies is urged to call Berkeley police at 510-981-5900 or UC police at 510-642-6760 or 510-664-8477.
Contact Rick Hurd at 925-945-4789 and follow him at Twitter.com/3rdERH.