Oakland Police seeing disturbing trend of youngsters committing crimes
- Darren. New at 11, an alarming trend in the East Bay tonight. Police are seeing more children as young as 10 years old committing serious crimes. KPIX 5's Betty Yu is in San Leandro tonight with more on what can be done to stop these crime sprees.
BETTY YU: Police say there certainly is an uptick in violent crimes committed by groups of young people here in San Leandro, and in Oakland. Tonight the Oakland police chief called on the community to help steer these juveniles in the right direction. Video shows two children, one of them armed with a gun, run up to a man standing by his car on Pershing Drive. The victim can be heard saying, "Are you serious?" before he body-slams the young man. The move sent the suspect's gun into the street. He screams while his partner begs the victim to let him go.
- Let him go!
- Turn the [BLEEP] around!
- OK, you're fine.
BETTY YU: San Leandro police say they took off in a small, white Kia SUV, which was used earlier in the day on April 9th. A trio of juveniles tried to rob a man that had just taken out cash from the ATM at this Chase Bank on Fairmont Drive. The victim claimed to be an off-duty police officer and successfully scared off the suspects.
LERONNE ARMSTRONG: Unfortunately, we have seen an increase in youth crime. We've seen a series of robberies, thefts, as well as carjackings, that we believe young people as young as 10 years old being involved.
BETTY YU: Tonight the Oakland police chief called the trend alarming. He's working with the Alameda County Probation Department and council members to find alternative programs.
LERONNE ARMSTRONG: We know that the pandemic is having a tremendous impact on young people. They don't have extracurricular activities. They don't have school. And so we know that they're being impacted. And so we just want to make sure that we give them some positive outlets.
BETTY YU: A few days after this attempted carjacking, Oakland Police arrested three young suspects inside the same getaway car for their involvement in an armed robbery. The juveniles were released to their guardians. But three days later, San Leandro police arrested an 11-year-old, 12-year-old, and two 14-year-olds in another carjacking on Begier Avenue. Two of those suspects were involved in this Pershing Drive case. And Oakland Police said that as schools and rec centers reopen and youth sports resume, they will serve as deterrents. In San Leandro, Betty Yu, KPIX 5.