A man is in custody on suspicion of brandishing a knife, violently resisting arrest, possessing a concealed knife and a probation violation for a scuffle outside a West Berkeley grocery store on Tuesday that left four officers injured, police said.
The incident began at about 8:54 a.m. Tuesday when the suspect, 42-year-old Jason Joyner of Berkeley, brandished a knife at two Department of Public Works employees in the area of San Pablo Avenue and Harrison Street "for no apparent reason," Berkeley police spokesman Lt. Kevin Schofield said.
Responding officers contacted Joyner at Harrison and 10th streets and ordered him to stop numerous times as they continued to attempt to de-escalate the situation, Schofield said.
But he said Joyner ignored their repeated commands and walked away from the officers, at one point pulling out his knife and brandished it at the officers.
However, Joyner then dropped the knife and continued to walk south and still ignored multiple commands to stop, according to Schofield.
Joyner walked south on Ninth Street from Harrison Street toward the front of 1025 Gilman St., where a Whole Foods Market is located, and continued to refuse commands to stop, Schofield said.
The officers tried to restrain Joyner from entering the store for the safety of the employees and customers who were inside, according to Schofield. Joyner, however, resisted violently and would not allow himself to be handcuffed.
During the struggle, four officers suffered injuries ranging from minor abrasions and scrapes to a potentially more serious knee injury, Schofield said. The officer who suffered the knee injury is still in the hospital, he said.
In addition, three officers were exposed to Joyner's blood that came from a cut on his hand. It's not clear if the cut on his hand occurred during the struggle or when he was holding his knife, Schofield said.
Joyner's blood will be tested so the officers will know if they have been exposed to any communicable diseases.
Paramedics treated Joyner for the minor cut on his hand before booking him into Santa Rita Jail in Dublin, where he is being held.
Schofield said Joyner is "well-known" to Berkeley police. He didn't immediately know what offense Joyner was on probation for, but court records indicate that he has prior convictions for battery, vandalism, trespassing, receiving stolen property, theft and possession of burglary tools.
Joyner is tentatively scheduled to be arraigned at the Wiley Manuel Courthouse in Oakland at 9 a.m. Thursday.