Berkeley resident faces federal handgun possession charges

Photo of San Pablo Park
Brian Bi/File
During Memorial Day weekend 2021, an occupant of a BMW SUV allegedly fired nine shots toward San Pablo Park. City resident Reginald Patillo has since been charged in federal court with possession of three handguns allegedly linked to the shooting investigation.

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Berkeley resident Reginald Patillo was charged in federal court Dec. 10 with possession of three handguns allegedly linked to a Memorial Day shooting investigation.

During the 2021 Memorial Day weekend, an occupant of a BMW SUV allegedly pulled up near the San Pablo Park tennis courts and fired nine shots toward the crowded park and tennis courts, according to an Alameda County declaration and determination form filed by the Berkeley Police Department. An occupied parked vehicle was struck five times.

The BMW then fled the scene, as described by eyewitnesses, the form states.

Video surveillance captured numerous park visitors fleeing in response to the shooting, the form adds. Surveillance also captured the license plate of the BMW, allegedly registered to Patillo, and captured a driver with a distinct facial tattoo.

Cell phone data allegedly placed Patillo at the scene of the crime when the shooting occurred and later moved in the same direction the BMW fled.

On July 9, BPD officers arrived at Patillo’s residence, according to a city of Berkeley press release. Officers formed a perimeter, with trained negotiators communicating with him via phone.

Upon surrendering and exiting his house, Patillo was arrested on suspicion of various charges related to assault and possession of a firearm, according to both the city press release and BPD spokesperson Byron White.

BPD officers proceeded to search the house for further evidence, the press release adds.

“Detectives recovered three loaded semi-automatic handguns (one of which was reported stolen), two high capacity magazines (to include a 50 round drum magazine) and 54 rounds of ammunition which he hid in a sump pump hole full of water prior to exiting the house,” the determination and declaration form BPD filed states.

Patillo has numerous prior arrests on various charges, including robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, narcotics sales and illegal firearm possession, the form adds. He has served time in state prison and has been convicted of assault and burglary and robbery.

Alameda County District Attorney’s Office spokesperson Angela Ruggiero said Patillo made bail in August with a bond of $320,000.

On Dec. 1, Patillo was arrested once again in Vallejo on a federal warrant, and police claimed to have found a loaded pistol in the BMW SUV he was driving, according to a Mercury News article. On Dec. 10, a federal magistrate ordered Patillo detained while the case is pending.

Patillo was charged with “being a felon in possession of a firearm,” the article adds.

Ruggiero said Patillo is currently in custody at Santa Rita Jail on federal charges. His pretrial date has been set for Jan. 5, 2022.

As of press time, the Alameda County Public Defender’s Office could not be reached for comment.

Contact Tarunika Kapoor at [email protected], and follow her on Twitter at @tkapoor_dc