3 Students Arrested After Fights Break Out in Berkeley

Three juveniles were arrested Friday after several fights involving high school students broke out in Berkeley, police said.

Berkeley police increased its patrols in the area of Shattuck Avenue after receiving complaints last week from business owners and patrons of a large group of students creating a disturbance.

Police this week followed up on rumors a fight was going to take place on Friday and had 21 officers on scene to ensure safety and keep the peace.

Officials said hundreds of kids from Berkeley Tech, Berkeley High School and Oakland Tech were on Shattuck Avenue from 3:30 to 8 p.m.

Several fights broke out prompting officers to make arrests.

"(I) saw a girl rip another girl's hair out," witness Thatcher Boomer said.

An Oakland Tech student was arrested for using pepper spray and not cooperating with police, officials said. The student was later released to a parent.

The other two arrests were of students from Berkeley High -- one on suspicion of battery and another on suspicion of obstructing an officer's duties. Both students were released to their parents.

Street musicians in the area said they stopped playing in hopes the students would go away.

"It seemed like police would come they would scatter and re-emerge somewhere else," witness Jimi Marks said. "We were trying to play and make some money. It didn't feel safe."

Police said they are working with the high schools and asking staff to discourage students from coming back to the area after school.

Officers are also urging parents to advise their kids to go straight home after school or avoid going to the Shattuck area so they do not get involved with incidents that have been taking place.

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