Police: UC Berkeley students robbed at gunpoint of cell phones, backpacks

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BERKELEY (KRON) — Police have a warning for students walking near the UC Berkeley campus after groups of armed robbers targeted students.

Two separate groups of UC Berkeley students walking near campus are robbed within a 90-minute time frame.

“Suspects pull up in a vehicle, either surrounds them or approach them in some kind of way and they’re armed with handguns, demanding their property,” Berkeley Police Officer Byron White.

One of the incidents happened early Thursday morning.

The first group of four male students were robbed at gunpoint of their backpacks and cell phones on the 2700 block of Channing Way.

“The students gave up their property and they got back in their car and drove away,” White said.

Police have limited descriptions of the three armed suspects or the vehicle they were driving.

An hour and a half later a second group of three male students are robbed of their backpacks and cellphones at gunpoint.

Police have limited descriptions of the suspects in that case as well.

Although the crime is similar and both happened within the same proximity and time frame, police do not think the two robberies are connected.

“We are looking into it but it does not appear to be the case,” the officer said.

Students who live in this area are voicing concerns.

“At this point it has almost become normalized on campus,” said student Mackenzie Berwick.

Other students agree.

“I think everyone in this part of campus has been aware that this has been happening,” said student Kieran Zimmer.

Berkeley police say in both robberies the victims gave up their belongings without incident.

No one was injured during these two robberies.

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