Seniors Violently Attacked by Armed Teens in Berkeley Neighborhood

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Seniors who live in a Berkeley Hills neighborhood are feeling rattled after a 62-year-old neighbor was violently attacked and robbed while out for a walk Monday afternoon.  

He is the second person in the neighborhood to be targeted by armed teenagers in less than a week. 

Berkeley police say the armed suspects in the latest attack were only 12 to 15 years old.

“It’s very disconcerting because you would normally think this is a pretty safe area,” said Edward Long, Berkeley resident.

That’s how people who live in the normally-quiet and safe neighborhood are feeling after two of their neighbors were held up at gunpoint in just the last week.

Police say two kids, armed with a gun violently attacked a 62-year-old man for a walk.

“He got approached from behind. He was pushed down to the ground, and they demanded some property that he had in his possession,” said Jessica Perry of the Berkeley Police Department. 

The kids stole the man’s watch and left him bleeding after hit his head on the sidewalk.

“He actually knocked on the neighbor’s door and they were the ones who called the police department to get him some assistance,” said Perry. 

Just last week, a 78-year-old woman was targeted by another armed teenager while walking her dog  just a few blocks away.  She used a stick to fight the attacker off. Police arrested the 16-year-old boy. 

“A little shocked that something like that happened. I was a little shocked that the people that committed the robbery were so young,” said resident Curtis Sakai. 

While police say the cases are not connected, some fear seniors are being deliberately targeted. 

“Might be an easier mark, so it’s a lot safer for them to attack somebody they think is vulnerable,” said Long. 

Police are urging residents to walk in groups and to be aware. And they say it’s best to hand over belongings instead of fighting back. 

Many seniors say they plan to take precautions.

“My wife and I will go out in pairs, we won’t go at night, will be careful. I don’t have a jewelry, but my wife won’t be wearing any jewelry. We won’t have our pocketbooks, or wallets so we won’t look like we’re sort of an easy mark,” said Long. 

“I will be careful. I think everyone has to be careful,” said neighbor Karen Borst-Rothe.

The two kids responsible for Monday’s attack have not yet been caught. They sped away in a gray, two-door Infiniti. Police are actively investigating.

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