School district employee shot, killed in Oakland drive-by

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A Berkeley Unified School District employee was shot multiple times and killed in a drive-by shooting Monday night in Oakland.

An individual inside a car opened fire at Beatrice Burton, a 33-year-old female Richmond resident, on the 3000 block of Union Street near the Poplar Recreation Center at around 9:48 p.m. last night, according to Oakland police, who are investigating the incident. Burton's boyfriend brought her to Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead at 10:31 p.m.

Burton worked for the Berkeley Unified School District as a member of the nutritional service department, according to district spokesperson Mark Coplan. Hired in 2008, she worked at the district's central kitchen before moving on to Oxford Elementary School to run the salad bar.

According to Coplan, Burton has two children. Neither attend Berkeley schools.

"This comes as a hit to the district from several different directions," Coplan said. "We have employees dealing with the loss of a coworker. As fellow employees, we need to help those who are hurt. It's just tragic that something like this could happen."

Coplan said three of Burton's family members are also district employees. He said the district is currently working with city mental health professionals to provide counseling for those employees and others who may have known or worked with her.

The Oakland Police Department urges anyone with information about the incident to call the department's Homicide Section at (510) 238-3821.


Jeffrey Butterfield covers local schools. Contact him at [email protected]

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