Amid an uptick in crime rates and a decision to defund the city’s police department by nearly $18 million, a former senator was assaulted and robbed in Oakland, California, according to a Twitter post on her account. The attack came an hour after police representatives said in a news conference they would take a hard stance against worsening crime.
Former California Democrat Sen. Barbara Boxer, 80, was allegedly pushed in the back and had her cell phone snatched on Monday in the Jack London Square area of Oakland. The neighborhood is located about six miles from where the city’s professional baseball team plays, as reported by The Hill.
“Earlier today former Senator Barbara Boxer was assaulted in the Jack London Square neighborhood of Oakland,” the post reads. “The assailant pushed her in the back, stole her cell phone and jumped in a waiting car. She is thankful that she was not seriously injured.”
Earlier today former Senator Barbara Boxer was assaulted in the Jack London Square neighborhood of Oakland. The assailant pushed her in the back, stole her cell phone and jumped in a waiting car. She is thankful that she was not seriously injured."
— Barbara Boxer (@BarbaraBoxer) July 26, 2021
Oakland Police confirmed there was a robbery on the 300 block of 3rd Street at close to 1:15 p.m. but have not named Boxer directly yet. The police said the victim was “approached by a suspect” who “forcefully took loss from the victim, and fled in a nearby waiting vehicle.”
The Oakland Police Department’s robbery section is taking up the investigation, and authorities are offering up to $2,000 for any intel that would lead to an arrest. Oakland law enforcement said in the conference just prior to the assault that the city’s criminals are “ruthless” and “aggressive.”
In June, the City Council of Oakland voted to slash its police budget by nearly $18 million after the Biden administration sent the city $190 million in COVID-19 relief dollars. Oakland Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong recently indicated there has been a 90 percent increase in homicides, 88 percent increase in carjackings, and 70 percent increase in shootings in the last year.
“Without the resources, it makes it challenging to make Oakland safe, and more families find themselves dealing with trauma,” Armstrong said in a June press conference.
Armstrong organized a crime victims rally in early July that brought together hundreds of black families. Videos that circulated on social media, however, showed alleged Antifa members crashing the protest and clutching signs reading “F-ck OCP” and “Quit your job, kkkop!”
“We are seeing far too many people being arrested by our officers, going jail, and coming right back out and committing those same crimes in our community. There has to be some level of accountability,” Armstrong said on Monday.
Boxer announced in 2015 that she would not run for reelection. She was first elected to Congress in 1983.