RICHMOND, Calif. (KTVU) - Part of Interstate 80 in Richmond was shut down Saturday morning as the California Highway Patrol investigated a deadly early-morning freeway shooting.
It’s the seventh shooting along that stretch of I-80 since November.
According to a CHP official, the incident was first reported around 1:00 a.m. Saturday morning as a traffic collision on the freeway near Hilltop Drive in Richmond.
When officers arrived at the scene they discovered that a silver Jeep SUV had drifted across all lanes of traffic, driven down an embankment along the freeway, and rolled over several times throwing the driver from the vehicle.
Upon closer investigation, however, they revealed that the victim had also been shot several times.
Officials describe the victim as a man in his 40’s but did not identify his city of residence.
The westbound lanes of the freeway were shut down just after 2:30 a.m. and traffic was diverted off at Appian Way, creating some major delays for morning drivers.
One KTVU Facebook follower posted a video that showed the CHP ordering stopped drivers to physically turn their cars around and drive the wrong way on I-80 to get them off the freeway.
Mobile viewers can watch the video HERE.
More than 30 evidence markers were visible on the freeway, some next to clearly visible shell casings.
Investigators reopened the freeway around 9:00a.m. Saturday morning.
The CHP’s preliminary investigation revealed that an unknown suspect vehicle drove alongside the Jeep and fired several shots into the vehicle before the crash.
Based off this evidence, investigators say they believe that the victim was specifically targeted and that there is no danger to the public at this time.
This is the latest in a series of shootings along this specific corridor of Interstate 80 that the CHP says may be connected to a feud between local gangs.
Since November that have been 6 other freeway shootings in this area, including one deadly one back in November.
Several innocent drivers have been caught in the crossfire from these other incidents.
The CHP addressed this fact earlier this month stressing that the shootings were not random acts of violence and that there is "very little danger to the motoring public."
Here's more from that CHP release:
Over 70,000,000 vehicles travel through the Interstate 80 corridor per year at this location. Though the number of shooting incidents in this area in recent months appears alarming, in reality less than 0.00001 % of vehicles which travel through this corridor have been affected. In each case, the CHP believes the victims were specifically targeted by the suspect. Rest assured, the CHP’s investigators are working closely with our allied agency partners to identify the suspects and put these incidents to an end.
Anyone with information pertinent to the incident can contact the California Highway Patrol at (800) 835-5247.