Emeryville & West Oakland were once again the target of mass-looting under the cover of unrelated protest activity. This time, local police agencies were able to contain the efforts according to an EPD Nixle alert.
The City of Emeryville posted an alert (now archived) on their website warning of “the possibility of protests and looting activities in Emeryville this evening” and advised businesses and residents to “plan accordingly.” Some businesses heeded this warning and closed early and boarded up their windows. Shops on Broadway in Oakland had seen significant damage a few nights prior.
The last time Emeryville’s shopping centers were the targeting of organized looting it happened promptly at 7 p.m.. Wednesday’s looting happened late into the evening.
According to the EPD, a large caravan of over 25 vehicles arrived at the Oakland Best Buy shortly after midnight. Several people exited the vehicles and tried to enter the locked business by force. They were not able to force entry inside the business and fled in vehicles to the nearby Game Stop on Hollis Street.
Numerous people once again exited the vehicles, smashed the windows, and pried open the interior barrier doors to enter the business. Once inside the business, store merchandise was stolen. The individuals ran back to the vehicles with the stolen merchandise and fled the scene as marked police units began to arrive.
One suspect was taken into custody without incident. That subject, Jose Lujan, 18 years old from Oakland was arrested for burglary and conspiracy to commit burglary. The investigation is ongoing, and investigators are currently seeking the identity of all involved.
Anyone with information is encouraged to call the Emeryville Police Department at 510-596-3700
Editors Note: The distinction between looting and burglary is not always clear but looting is generally associated with social unrest, protest activity or done during a state of emergency.