Oakland police arrest juvenile suspects in violent-crime spree

OAKLAND — In a warning Tuesday, police said they have arrested several juvenile suspects believed to be involved in armed robberies and carjackings throughout the city.

The suspects, who police said range in age from 11 to 16 years old, were believed to use stolen vehicles to carry out the robberies in recent weeks.

Before officers arrested several youths early Tuesday in East Oakland, authorities said that among the robberies they are believed responsible for include gunpoint and knife-point encounters Monday in the city’s Eastlake, Highland Terrace, Melrose and Webster neighborhoods.

A vehicle used in some of the robberies was also recovered, authorities said.

In a statement Tuesday evening, Oakland Interim police chief Susan E. Manheimer decried the incidents and said officers were working with outside partner agencies, including the city’s department of violence prevention and Alameda County’s probation department, to prevent similar crimes.

“It is my hope that everyone is alarmed by the fact that it appears these violent acts are being committed by middle-school-age youth, barely more than children, armed with weapons,” Manheimer said in part.

“This not only poses a great risk to our community, but also to the offenders and their young peers.”

Police also sought to remind residents to keep close watch when getting into or leaving vehicles, remembering to lock and secure them, and to limit distraction from personal electronic devices.

Investigators were looking at the suspects for possible connections to other incidents, but released no other details. A

Anyone with information may call Oakland police’s robbery section at 510-238-3326.

Contact George Kelly at 408-859-5180.

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Author: George Kelly, Harry Harris