Stephen Ellison

UC Berkeley Student Shot With BB Gun: Police

A UC Berkeley student suffered minor injuries and several  others were terrified in a BB or pellet gun shooting that occurred on campus early Monday morning, according to UC Berkeley police.

Around 12:20 a.m., a group of eight students was sitting and standing on the steps of the school's International House building at the corner of Piedmont Avenue and Bancroft Way, police said.

The group noticed a person standing across the street holding what appeared to be a gun. The suspect then began shooting toward the building, causing the students to run inside, according to police.

One of the students, a 19-year-old from Egypt who did not want to give his name, was a little shaken by the incident.

"I thought it was fireworks or something, but then I looked and saw a guy with a gun; he had it in both hands," the student said. "The faces of the people running toward us were really scared. ... You start to panic."

Police said about six to 15 shots shattered glass on the building and left one student with a flesh wound near his eye.

After a preliminary investigation, officers determined the gun used was possibly a pellet or BB gun. Witnesses also told police a second male suspect may have been in the area setting off fireworks.

Officers searched the area but were unable to find the suspects, according to police. They say the suspects are putting themselves and others in danger because when officers respond to reports of shots fired and see someone holding a gun, they're going to presume it's a genuine firearm.

"Prior to coming here, I was a bit worried about the whole gun thing," the Egyptian student said. "Now, knowing something happened where I'm staying is terrifying."

The first suspect who shot at the group was described as a black male about 6 feet tall wearing a dark gray or black hooded sweatshirt and black pants. The second suspect was described as a black male wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt, police said.

Around the same time, a similar incident occurred at the nearby intersection of Channing Way and Ellsworth Street, according to Berkeley police spokesman Sgt. Andrew Frankel.

In that incident, a person in a car shot at another person, striking them in the back, possibly with a BB or pellet gun, police said.

The victim declined medical attention, according to Frankel.

The suspect in that shooting was described as a black man about 6 feet tall who was wearing a red hooded sweatshirt and drove a white four-door vehicle, Frankel said.

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