A family of three driving on Interstate 80 on Tuesday night was surprised when a bullet struck their vehicle, shattering a window and injuring a woman who was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, authorities said.
Inside the vehicle were a woman in her 60s, a woman in her 30s and an 8-year-old child.
Officer Byron White, a Berkeley Police spokesman, said BPD and the California Highway Patrol are investigating the incident, which took place in West Berkeley on eastbound I-80 between the Ashby Avenue and University Avenue off-ramps.
Around 10:15 p.m., a bullet struck the vehicle, shattering one of its side windows. Flying glass injured the woman in her 30s, according to police.
White said the vehicle’s occupants did not know what hit them.
“From the vantage point of the people in the car, they’re driving along, they hear a loud boom, and the window is smashed,” he said. “They thought they had gotten into some type of accident.”
They pulled over and the California Highway Patrol responded. That’s when officers realized the vehicle had been hit by a bullet.
White said it’s too early in the investigation to say what might have prompted the shooting.
“We don’t know whether a passing motorist fired at them, or if this was a stray bullet from somewhere else,” he said.
Police did not release any information about the hometowns of the vehicle’s occupants. White said it was likely that the woman who sought treatment has since been released from the hospital.
According to media reports, there have been two other shootings on I-80 this month, in Pinole and San Pablo. The California Highway Patrol is investigating those incidents and has not said whether Tuesday night’s shooting may be linked to them.
Police are asking anyone with information about Tuesday night’s incident to contact the Berkeley Police Department’s Homicide Unit at 510-981-5741.
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This story was updated after publication, at 12:30 p.m., with additional information from police.