Berkeley burglary victim upset with police response

Surveillance video shows a man walking up to a market in Berkeley over the weekend.  He tries the door, pauses and then leaves, but he comes back - again and again. 

"The guy had came four different times, four separate times, with different weapons," said Daryn Singh, owner of Kathmandu Market & Deli on Telegraph Avenue, several blocks from UC Berkeley.

The man first showed up at about 6:45 a.m. Saturday morning. 

But he returns about 10 minutes later with red pliers and tries to bust open the thick padlock on the front door. 

"The third time, he had an even bigger set of pliers to jar that padlock loose. He was successful in that third try," Singh said.

When he returned a fourth time, he was armed with a big yellow crowbar, which he used to pry open the door. 

He made his way inside, took out a trash bag that he brought with him and helped himself to merchandise.

"He ended up taking all our tobacco products, cigarettes, some electronics too as well," Singh said.

Singh says he’s more upset that it took Berkeley police more than three hours to respond, even after police dispatch was immediately alerted by the alarm company.

"For me, my emotions were very - anger, frustration. We felt helpless," he said.

Officer Byron White, Berkeley police spokesman said, "Simply put, we did not have officers available at the moment. We have to prioritize our calls."

White said officers couldn't respond to the store any earlier because they were busy that morning with an overdose-death investigation as well as a missing person at risk. Saturday mornings are typically more lightly staffed, he said.

"As soon as we had officers available, that’s when we responded to this burglary," White said.

That doesn’t satisfy Singh.

"I think it’s still very disrespectful," he said. "Their job is to protect and serve the community, and that means every single individual. We are a big part of this community, and we deserve to be treated better."

Neither Singh nor police recognize the intruder. The police investigation is continuing.