OAKLAND -- A 20-year-old Oakland man has been arrested and charged in the Saturday afternoon shooting of four people outside an Uptown District hair salon after his attempt to steal a purse from a hair stylist’s car was foiled, police said Monday.
Demetrius Ward was arrested about 11:39 p.m. Sunday in West Oakland. Police say Ward fired into the Badd Boyz Hair and Barber Salon in the 1700 block of Telegraph Avenue just after 4 p.m.
The four were shot Saturday afternoon moments after the car of a 28-year-old stylist at the salon was broken into and her purse and other valuables taken. The woman’s boyfriend and some others chased Ward down and got back her purse, but Ward got away, authorities said.
Police said Ward soon returned on a bicycle with a gun about 4:10 p.m. and began firing into the salon.
Of the four wounded, three worked at the salon, including one man who was shot four times. All four have been released from the hospital and are expected to survive.
Ward was charged with one count of attempted murder, three counts of assault with a semi-automatic firearm, second-degree automobile burglary and violation of probation. Ward has a prior conviction for residential burglary in June 2012. Ward only admitted to the auto burglary, police said.
Ward will be prosecuted as a two-strike felon and could face a maximum 25 years to life in prison. He is being held without bail.
“He’s one of the people that really need to be kept behind bars for good,” said Dwayne McCarther, a part owner of the hair salon. “This is some kind of new generation that is absolutely heartless.”
McCarther said his employees, including Patrick Fair, were trying to protect their female co-worker. Fair, who was shot in the calf, returned to the hair salon Monday and plans to go back to work as soon as possible.
“These guys are heroes,” McCarther said. “They were trying to defend a lady and her property.”
Investigating Officer Anwawn Jones credited patrol officers with getting Ward into custody. Using surveillance photos of Ward, the officers spotted him in the 2100 block of Market Street. Burglary tools, including lockpicks, were found on Ward while he was being taken into custody, police said.
The arrest also was due to cooperation from victims, who helped identify the shooter, Oakland Interim Chief Sean Whent said Monday. Police said at least one victim of the shooting identified Ward as the gunman.
Historically, police have had trouble getting witnesses and victims of violent crime in Oakland to cooperate, making arrests difficult.