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Suspect in custody for series of sexual batteries near UC Berkeley

Berkeley police arrested a 37-year-old man in the fourth week of July 2019 as a suspect in a series of sexual batteries where female bicyclists were targeting in the area surrounding University of California at Berkeley in Berkeley, Calif.

A 37-year-old man was arrested earlier this week on suspicion of a series of sexual batteries that occurred recently in the area surrounding the University of California at Berkeley campus, police said.

Jodonnell Powell Jr. was arrested Monday in connection with three attacks that all involved women in their 20s who Powell allegedly approached while on a bicycle and grabbed by their buttocks or genitals, according to Berkeley police.

The first battery was reported at 8:14 a.m. on July 18 near Bancroft Way and Fulton Street, the second was reported 36 minutes later in the 2400 block of Channing Way, and the third at about 8:40 p.m. the next day near Hearst Avenue and Walnut Street, police said.

On Monday, detectives from the Police Department’s Sex Crimes Unit spotted someone riding a bicycle who matched the description given of the suspect. They detained the man, identified as Powell, and eventually arrested him on suspicion of sexual battery and violating his probation. Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Berkeley police Sex Crimes Unit at (510) 981-5735.

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