After two shootings in two days last week, Berkeley police increased patrols throughout southwest Berkeley, resulting in 15 arrests, including six for illegal possession of a firearm. Other arrests were for probation, parole and drug violations.
In addition, police on Thursday arrested a man suspected in the April killing of East Palo Alto diner owner Kenneth Hamel III. Berkeley police spotted suspect Kevin Edward Clark, 39, of Vallejo walking in the 1400 block of Harmon Street and recognized him from a wanted poster.
The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Department took custody of Clark, who was then booked into the San Mateo County Jail on suspicion of murder.
Police spokesperson Mary Kusmiss said the increased patrols will be maintained at least through next week.
Last Tuesday a 27-year-old Berkeley man was shot on Alcatraz Street near California Street at 2 p.m. The following day, a 31-year-old Oakland man was shot on the 1600 block of Russell Street. In that shooting, the window of a corner grocery store and two vehicles were shot out. No bystanders were injured.
Kusmiss said police are unsure if the two shootings are related.
Neighbors in South Berkeley said the shootings were disturbing, but added that the Berkeley and Oakland police have been doing a good job of patrolling the area. “They’re doing an excellent job of catching the bad guys,” said South Berkeley resident Sam Herbert. “When this kind of thing happens the neighbors circle the wagons. We look out for each other because we will not be victims.”