Police are investigating a shooting on San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley that sent a man to Highland Hospital on Saturday evening, according to preliminary reports.

Scroll down for updates from police and a witness to the shooting aftermath

The shooting took place just before 5:50 p.m. outside a liquor shop at 2198 San Pablo Ave. (at Allston Way) on the west side of the street. Police had not responded to multiple inquiries for information as of publication time.

Police blocked off a stretch of San Pablo Avenue near Bancroft Way during the investigation and closed the intersection to traffic, including AC Transit bus service.

There were reports that the victim got into a good Samaritan’s vehicle after the shooting and was dropped off in Albany before being taken to Highland Hospital, the regional trauma center in Oakland.

According to unconfirmed radio dispatches, the shooter also left the area in a vehicle — which reportedly sustained gunfire damage — and went northbound on San Pablo Avenue and eastbound on Cowper Street.

Police sent out a Nixle alert just after 6:40 p.m. advising people of undefined “police activity” at Bancroft and Cowper, which do not intersect. The Nixle alert did not reference San Pablo Avenue or the shooting but asked people to avoid the area.

There have been more than 20 confirmed shootings in Berkeley this year but very few of them have left people wounded.

Berkeleyside will update this story when additional information becomes available.

Update, 7:45 p.m. Police told Berkeleyside that the man who was shot is expected to survive and that San Pablo Avenue and nearby streets are now open to traffic. The investigation is ongoing.

Update, 8:20 p.m. A longtime neighborhood resident told Berkeleyside she had been in a car with a friend picking up a snack from Jack in the Box, on San Pablo Avenue north of Allston Way, when they heard four rapid “pops” that turned out to have been gunfire.

They were facing north on San Pablo looking toward Cowper, she said, when they heard a man yelling repeatedly for help.

They looked to the right — toward the sidewalk on the east side of San Pablo — and saw a man who appeared to have been shot in the arm. He looked like he may have been in his 30s, she said.

They also saw two vehicles speed away heading north and ultimately gave statements to police, she said, adding that the shooting did not appear to have been random.

“You never know what’s going to happen in Berkeley,” she said.

Emilie Raguso (former senior editor, news) joined Berkeleyside in 2012 and covered politics, public safety and development until her departure in 2022. In 2017, Emilie was named Journalist of the Year...