An 8-year-old girl was shot with an arrow by an unknown assailant on Tuesday at the Lawrence Hall of Science in the hills just above UC Berkeley. The third-grader from San Rafael was on a field trip when she was hit in the leg.
The girl, who attends Mary E. Silva Elementary School, was sitting on a life-sized sculpture of a fin whale outside the building at 1 Centennial Drive when she was struck. She suffered non-life-threatening injuries and was taken to Children’s Hospital Oakland with the arrow still lodged in her thigh.
UC Berkeley police Capt. Steve Roderick said the shooter has not yet been found. Police do not know if she was hit on purpose or by accident.“There’s no indication it was intentional at this time but we’re not ruling that out,” he said. “Hopefully it was an accident, but we don’t know for sure.”
Goeff Vassallo, who was escorting other students on another field trip, witnessed the shooting. "You shouldn't be shooting an arrow around here at all," said Vassallo, who is an archer himself. "There's no range here. You're not going to have archery here, with kids like this."
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Vassallo was standing near the whale when the girl was hit. "She was pretty calm. She was crying a little bit. She said, 'Oh, it hurts,’” Vassallo said. "One of the adults was comforting her, waiting for the emergency personnel to get here."
Roderick said UCPD responded to the call and immediately began searching for who fired the arrow.
"It doesn't appear to be associated with any experiments or demonstrations or anything associated with the Hall of Science," Roderick said.
“It’s shorter than the typical arrow would be that’s used with a bow,” Lt. Marc Decoulode of UCPD said. “I’m not an expert, but that’s what I’m being told.”
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Decoulade said UCPD does not know if the incident is connected with the shooting of a doe with an arrow in the Berkeley hills back in October.