From Chris Magnus:
As you know, our community has been struggling with some significant increases in criminal activity over the past 6 weeks and we believe much of it is tied to gang activity—particularly gang activity involving younger gang members. I am very impressed with the way our officers and detectives have stepped up to deal with this challenge. Our personnel are really working hard to gather and share information in a timely way that has lead to several major arrests. In addition, we have been closely with our allied law enforcement partners, including the Sheriff’s Department, San Pablo PD, the D.A.’s Office investigators, and others to focus our resources on the right people so we can have the maximum impact.
You can see from the incidents listed below that our officers are making some key arrests under difficult circumstances—often involving wanted suspects in possession of guns. In addition, we have been focusing on the street robberies around the corridor area between the BART Station and 23rd St., with some very positive results. Again, we see a pattern of older juveniles and very young adults involved in much of this serious criminal behavior.
Finally, we were part of another successful and well attended Cinco de Mayo celebration this past weekend. All three chiefs (assisted by a great group of Police Explorers!) were in the Saturday parade (handing out hundreds of stickers and other items to all the kids). The Department was also well-represented on Sunday at the Festival, with Crime Prevention, Recruiting, Traffic, and other department folks all interacting extensively with the public. We received very positive feedback from community members and visitors to the city!
Chief Chris Magnus
Monday, May 6, 2013, 10:30 p.m., 1400 block of Ohio Ave.--Officer Calderan observed a 31 year-old male driving a vehicle on Marina Way near Ohio Ave. with the music playing loudly. When Officer Calderan attempted to conduct a traffic stop, the driver failed to yield. There was a short pursuit to Harbour Way and Roosevelt Avenue, where the suspect stopped the car and fled on foot. The suspect was taken into custody in the 500 block of Harbour Way by Officer J. Tong. The vehicle was reported stolen from Antioch earlier during the day. The suspect is currently on Parole. He was booked into Jail.
Monday, May 6, 2013, 3:45 p.m., 2nd St. and Maine Ave. --Officer Hoffman was on patrol in the area of Maine Ave. and S. 2nd St. when he observed the suspect standing in front of the fence gate of a secured commercial lot. As Officer Hoffman watched, the 28 year-old suspect dropped a object into the opening of the fence gate. Officer Hoffman made contact with the suspect and recovered a tin canister. The canister held 18 individually packaged pieces of cocaine base. The suspect was arrested and transported to the County Jail.
- Monday, May 6, 2013, 1600 block of 6th St.—RPD is one the agencies that participates in WestNET, the West Co. Narcotics (and other major crimes) Enforcement Team. WestNET served a search warrant at an address in the 1600 block of 6th Street. Detectives recovered 2 firearms, 6 grams of Methamphetamine and made 2 arrests. RPD’s detective assigned to the team conducted the investigation.
- Sunday, May 5, 2013, 6:10 p.m., 23rd and Wendell—Special Investigative Section Detectives were conducting surveillance in the area when they saw a known suspect riding a bicycle on 24th St. The detectives noticed the suspect had a gun in his waistband. The detectives maintained surveillance until uniformed officers arrived and arrested the suspect. The suspect was arrested for possession of the firearm, as well as for a no-bail warrant.
Sunday, May 5, 2013, 4:00 p.m., 300 block of 6th St.--Officers responded to this address to investigate a burglary. The victim told Officer Villalobos that she arrived home and saw an individual coming out of her front door. The suspect pushed the victim out of the way and ran SB on 6th St. Officer Villalobos broadcast a description of the suspect over the radio. Officers circulated the area and detained a person who matched the description of the suspect at 4th St. and Chanslor Ave. The victim positively identified the 35 year-old suspect as the burglar. The suspect was transported and booked into the Richmond Jail.
- Sunday, May 5, 2013—23rd St.—The Cinco De Mayo Festival was held on 23rd St. from Barrett Ave. to Clinton Ave. Many thousands of residents and others attended the event throughout the day. The Police Department was well-represented at the festival with displays that included our motorcycles (very popular with children!), our boat, and our new Mobile Command Center. Crime prevention, community policing, and traffic safety materials were distributed. In addition to our sworn staff, the Department’s Police Explorers, Cadets, and volunteers were all involved. The event wrapped up without any problems. A total of five arrests were made, with two of them being for weapons violations (knives taken from identified gang members).
- Saturday, May 4, 2013, 4:30 a.m., S. 8th St. and Ohio Ave.--Officers responded to the 1100 block of Ohio Ave. on the report of a commercial burglary in progress. As officers arrived in the area, the 47 year-old suspect was seen riding a bicycle down the street. When the officers attempted to stop him, the suspect fled on the bicycle to S. 8th St. and the Greenway, where he ultimately crashed the bicycle and was taken into custody. The suspect was found to have methamphetamine on his person and he had a “no bail” parole warrant.
- Friday, May 3, 2013, evening, Craneway Pavilion--Sgt. Russell led a contingency of School Resource Officers and others who worked the Richmond High School prom at the Craneway Pavilion. There were no reported incidents—all went well--with approximately 350 people in attendance.
Friday, May 3, 2013, 1:00 p.m., 500 block of 5th St.--Officers responded to this location on the report of a shooting. As officers were arriving, they saw a black Honda Accord fleeing the scene. The vehicle stopped on Ripley Ave. near 8th St. When officers approached the vehicle, they could see what appeared to be a black semi-auto handgun inside a purse, which was in the back seat of the vehicle. Both suspects were detained. Inside the purse was a .40 cal handgun with an extra magazine next to it.
Inside a nearby house, officers located a victim suffering from a gunshot wound to the leg. The victim was transported to Kaiser Hospital. The victim and witnesses were not very cooperative. Both suspects were transported and booked into the Richmond Jail.
Friday, May 3, 2013, 12:45 a.m., 600 block of McLaughlin Ave.--Officers were initially dispatched to an address in the 5300 block of Clinton Ave. to conduct an interrupted burglary investigation. A resident phoned Dispatch to report he heard his car alarm sound and when he went outside to investigate, his trunk was open and a white Honda was speeding away.
Officer Harris who was in the area, observed a white Honda speeding on Lassen Ave. near McBryde Ave. Officer Harris attempted to stop the vehicle, however the driver did not yield, resulting in a vehicle pursuit. Officer Harris pursued the vehicle unto I-80 to the Gilman Ave. exit, where CHP attempted to assume the lead as our units followed. The suspects continued to San Pablo Ave. and proceeded NB toward Albany. At about San Pablo Ave. and Marin St., the suspect turned off his vehicle lights and proceeded toward El Cerrito--at which point our officers disengaged in the pursuit and followed only to maintain a visual.
The suspects continued on San Pablo Ave. to Peerless Ave. where they collided into another vehicle. Both suspects fled into the BART parking lot where they were taken into custody without incident. Moments prior to the pursuit, the Honda was reported stolen by a citizen on Pyramid Ave. in Beat 8. The occupants of the other vehicle were treated for minor injuries and released at the scene. Both the driver and the passenger in the stolen vehicle were arrested on multiple charges. DUI Officers Sanchez and Mendler assisted with the traffic accident investigation and DUI.
Friday, May 3, 2013, 2:20 a.m., 1700 block of Roosevelt Ave.--Officers were dispatched to an address in the 600 block of 17th Street to conduct a robbery investigation. The victim phoned Dispatch to report that while walking near 17th St. and Roosevelt Ave., two males in their late teens approached him on foot. One subject described as either a WM or HM wearing a black t- shirt was armed with gun. The suspect demanded cash and other valuables. The second suspect was wearing a dark hoodie that was pulled tightly over his face. The suspects took the victims cell phones before meeting up with two other subjects and the group left the area toward the Richmond BART station.
Earlier during the shift, Officer Rogers detained two individuals in the area of 22nd St. and Grant who had a similar description to the suspects from the Metro Walk area robberies. While officers were checking the area around 22nd St., the victim observed the suspect with the gun standing in the intersection of 17th St. and Roosevelt Ave. Officer Longacre arrived in the area and observed both of the suspects--who attempted to escape. The suspects were followed to 17th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue where they were taken into custody and a firearm was recovered. Two other suspects were located and arrested a short time later, including one of the individuals stopped earlier on 22nd St. It appears the suspects may be involved in several recent robberies based on other evidence located at the scene. ISD Lieutenant Tirona was notified and a detective team responded to conduct the follow up investigation.
- Thursday, May 2, 2013, 7:00 p.m., 1700 block of Barrett--While on routine patrol, Central District Officer R. Branch spotted a suspect, who is a known meth supplier and career criminal, in a location known to be frequented by narcotic dealers and users. Officer Branch checked the suspect’s wanted status and discovered that he was currently wanted for two separate felony arrest warrants. Officer Branch was assisted by Officers Avila and Domenici in taking the suspect into custody. The suspect was booked into the Richmond Jail.
- Thursday, May 2, 2013, 8:00 p.m., (Unincorporated) North Richmond—A 21 year-old suspect, who is one of RPD’s “Most Wanted”, was taken into custody in North Richmond by Contra Costa Co. Sheriff’s Office deputies on routine patrol. This suspect had a warrant for being a gang member in possession of a gun and is believed to be a significant danger to the community. The suspect was transported directly to RPD jail where he was booked.
- Thursday, May 2, 2013, 9:00 p.m., 600 block of 16th St.--Officers R. Branch and A. Domenici responded back to the location where a rape had occurred earlier in the day. Upon their arrival, they located the outstanding 37 year-old suspect on the property. The suspect was taken into custody and transported to Jail.
- Thursday, May 2, 2013, 9:15 p.m., 000 block of W. Bissell Ave.--Officers Moody and Radetich responded to this block on the report of a group of males "flashing gang signs." As they approached the group, the group members started to scatter in different directions. The officers ordered the group to stop. A 29 year-old holding an open container of beer and a 19 year-old were stopped. Two other young males ran away on the pathway, jumped a fence, and were detained on the other side of the building by assisting officers in the area. The two males who ran were later identified. One had a $100K warrant out of San Francisco, the other had a “No Bail” Richmond warrant. The first two suspects were booked into RPD Jail for resisting arrest and public intoxication.
As an interesting side note, this police action generated a fair amount of resident onlookers who reside in the Atchison Village community. As the officers were departing the area with suspects in custody, the crowd erupted in cheers and applause for a job well done.