WALNUT CREEK, Calif. (KTVU) - Just before 1:30 Saturday morning, as the bars were letting out, police say someone fired multiple shots, killing one man.
They say 38 year-old Courtney Brown had been hit three times in the back and died leaving behind a daughter and a fiance. It is Walnut Creek's only homicide this year.
"All information thus far indicates this was not a random event," said Walnut Creek Lt. Tom Cashion.
Police say Brown had left Crogan's Sports Bar in downtown at the corner of Cypress and Locust Streets before being shot. They say there were about 30 people in the area at the time of the shooting.
Investigators were combing the area Saturday looking to collect any surveillance video.
They wouldn't say what lead up to the killing, and offered no motive for it.
They have only a vague description of the gunman who ran away before police arrive
"People who witnessed the shooting say he was an African American male, in his 20s. Six feet tall and 160 pounds," said Cashion.
Four years ago Walnut Creek wrestled with problems with downtown bars after a series of brawls on the streets outside clubs..
The city increased police patrols and kept a closer watch on the bars.
"We've taken a lot of steps to resolve issues that occurred a number of years ago, where some of the bars were a little more active than they should have been," said Rich Carlston, Walnut Creek's Mayor Pro-Tem
Carlston says what happened this morning is an anomaly.
"It's a safe community. It s safe in the evening," he said.
Residents we spoke with agree.
"I've seen yelling between boyfriends and girlfriends, occasionally drugs being sold. But nothing of the level of violence that occurred last night here. That is certainly new for Walnut Creek, said Jeff Elfont.
People coming downtown Saturday night may see an even larger police presence.
Police say they will be stepping up patrols.
Investigators say they are pursing a number of leads.