Police car with burn marks
A UC Berkeley Police vehicle was heavily damaged in an explosion caused by an incendiary device being placed beneath it on June 1, 2024. (Photo/Abolition Media)

Oakland man arrested in connection with string of UC Berkeley arsons

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An arrest has been made in connection with four arson attacks on UC Berkeley’s campus in June, including one on Sunday, claimed by pro-Palestinian activists. 

Casey Robert Goonan, 34, of Oakland, was arrested Monday and charged with felonies for the “possession and use of destructive devices and multiple counts of arson,” according to a Monday evening press release from Cal Fire.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal’s Arson and Bomb Unit, which is part of Cal Fire, announced the arrest in collaboration with the UC Berkeley Police Department, the FBI and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Goonan is being held at Alameda County Jail on $1 million bail, according to the press release.

Anonymous pro-Palestinian activists claimed responsibility for at least three arson attacks on UC Berkeley’s campus this month: torching a university police vehicle on June 1, setting fire outside of Koshland Hall on June 13 and setting a fire at a campus construction site on Sunday. 

Monday’s press release described the attack on the police vehicle as a “firebombing.”

According to an anonymous blog post Friday on Indybay.org, far-left activists were calling for an escalation of violence on Bay Area university campuses “in solidarity with Palestine and all facing genocides perpetuated by the U.$. university systems — and by extension the Amerikkkan and Zionist settler states.” Referring to the U.S. as “Amerikkka” is common among groups that describe the U.S. as fascist.

Natalie Weinstein
Natalie Weinstein

Natalie Weinstein is J.'s senior editor. She previously worked as a senior editor at CNET News and, in the 1990s, as a reporter and editor at J., which was then called the Jewish Bulletin.