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California in Brief / BERKELEY

Murder charge is filed in stabbing

May 07, 2008|John M. Glionna

A 20-year-old Berkeley man was charged with murder Tuesday in connection with the stabbing death of a UC Berkeley student killed during a brawl near the campus last weekend.

Andrew Thomas Hoeft-Edenfield, a Berkeley City College student with no previous criminal record, was arraigned Tuesday in Alameda County Superior Court, authorities said.

Christopher Wootton, 21, an engineering student from Bellflower, was stabbed early Saturday during a melee in the back parking lot of a campus sorority house.

Berkeley police on Tuesday released new details on the fracas, which they characterized as a "pride fight."

"Witnesses say there was a form of disrespect going back and forth and neither side was backing down," said Sgt. Mary Kusmiss, a Berkeley Police Department spokeswoman.

Authorities say that Wootton apparently called 911 from his cellphone as the melee began about 2:45 a.m. Saturday. By the time police arrived, he lay dying from a stab wound.

A memorial service was scheduled Tuesday night for Wootton at the Sproul Plaza steps on the UC Berkeley campus.

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