A 38-year-old Hayward man was fatally shot while walking dogs with his daughter Tuesday night, Hayward police said. The shooting was reported shortly after 10 p.m. near the intersection of B and Vermont streets. Arriving officers found Thomas Cunningham unconscious and suffering from at least one gunshot wound. Cunningham was taken by ambulance to Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley where he was pronounced dead, police said. Investigators said Cunningham and his 13-year-old daughter had walked with their two dogs to a neighborhood liquor store to buy ice cream.After purchasing the ice cream, they passed by the suspect. One of the dogs approached the suspect and sniffed him, police said. The suspect asked Cunningham and his daughter to get the dog, and they did, but the suspect and Cunningham began exchanging words. The suspect then pulled out a handgun and shot Cunningham, while the daughter ran to get
help from liquor store employees, police said. The suspect was last seen running south on Vermont Street toward Hill Avenue. He was described by witnesses as a black man in his early 20s, between 5 feet 4 inches and 6 feet tall, with a very slight build, police said.
He was wearing baggy blue jeans and a dark brown or black hooded sweatshirt with a white logo on the rim of the hood. The sweatshirt may have had an orange design on the front. Members of the Police Department’s Youth and Family Services Bureau were called in to assist the daughter and the rest of the family, Lt. Chris Orrey said. “Obviously that’s a pretty tragic thing to witness,” Orrey said.
Investigators believe there are additional witnesses to the shooting and urge anyone with information to call Inspector Rod Lampkin or
Inspector Fraser Ritchie at (510) 293-7034, or Hayward police dispatch at (510) 293-7000.
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