DVC Campus shooting occurs after Diablo Gaels rugby match


(Photo by Christopher C. Long/The Inquirer, 2010)

Christopher C. Long

Shots rang out on campus as gunfire erupted after a rugby match at DVC’s football field about 8 p.m. Saturday. The suspect is in custody and is recovering with the victim at John Muir hospital in Walnut Creek, district police services said.

Tim Leong, the district’s communications director, said the victim’s injuries are not life-threatening.
What started as a fist fight quickly became explosive with the drawing of a gun. The shooting was the result of an altercation between spectators of a match between the Diablo Gaels and the San Francisco Golden Gate Rugby Club, said a DVC press release.

According to district officials, the victim punched the suspect in the face, resulting in the suspect firing several gunshots.

The Diablo Gaels are not affiliated with Diablo Valley College. Updates of the match were not available on either team’s websites at press time.

The search for the suspect throughout the Pleasant Hill campus and beyond was assisted by multiple law enforcement agencies, including college district police services, the Pleasant Hill and Concord police departments and the Contra Costa Sheriff’s office, which deployed one of its helicopters.

“They did an outstanding job,” said Charles Gibson, chief of district police services of the cooperation by area law enforcement agencies.

Police even stormed the DVC childcare center at one point, though no one was found there, Gibson said.
The pursuit finally concluded when the suspect turned himself in at John Muir hospital in Walnut Creek around 11:30 Saturday evening.

Gibson said the suspect will be under the custody of district police services at the county detention facility in Martinez, once he is released from the hospital.

Asked if DVC students should worry about their safety on campus, Lt. Tom Sharp, the senior police services officer at DVC, said, “Since this wasn’t a random act, overall safety hasn’t changed.”

Sharp said this was an isolated incident with a specific target involved. The shooter was not targeting random DVC students.

This incident comes less than a week after KTVU news reported a separate rugby-related shooting in East Palo Alto. Two men were shot during an altercation after a women’s rugby team practice, according to news reports.

Sharp wouldn’t say if the two incidents are related, but said district police “wouldn’t rule it out.”

“We’ll look into it,” Sharp said, “[but] there’s no hard evidence right now.”

Chief Gibson said that the district is fully-prepared to handle an investigation of this sort and has assigned Detective Randy Hibbard to take the lead.


Contact Christopher C. Long at [email protected]