The more seriously wounded of two male Albany High School students who were shot on the BART path in El Cerrito Wednesday is in stable condition and expected to improve, police said late Thursday.
The injured pair and a third schoolmate were on the path near the El Cerrito Library shortly before 2 p.m. Wednesday when two males accosted them about their shoes, according to Albany High School principal Ted Barone.
Two of the Albany students were shot, one receiving a flesh wound to the face, and the other injured "critically," Barone said. The third student escaped without injury, he said in a statement to the school community.
The seriously injured student was hospitalized and is in stable and apparently improving condition today, El Cerrito police Captain Michael Regan said.
"The information we have at the moment is that he is in stable condition and should continue to improve," Regan said. The other victim was treated and released Wednesday night.
The shooters — described by police as young African-American males in dark clothing, including hooded sweatshirts — fled on foot eastbound on Stockton Avenue. The shooting took place on the path, also known as the Ohlone Greenway, between Stockton and Lincoln Avenue, not far from the El Cerrito Library and Fairmont Elementary School.
Reagan said the victims are cooperating with police in the investigation and that there is no indication at this time that they knew the shooters.
The Contra Costa Times cited Regan saying the two groups engaged in some kind of argument before the shots were fired.
A visit Thursday afternoon by a Patch reporter to the segment of the BART path where the shooting occurred – 24 hours after the incident – found it deserted and quiet except for the sounds of children playing nearby at the Fairmont School playground, the occasional noise of BART trains overhead and a siren in the distance. (See the attached brief video clip for a glimpse of the scene.)
A mother of a child at Fairmont said her daughter could hear the shots while in school Wednesday and was crying when the mother picked her up. The school was placed on lockdown for 30 minutes until police determined that the shooters had left the area.
Anyone with information about the suspects or the crime is asked to call El Cerrito police at 510-237-3233.