A drive-by shooting is a type of assault that usually involves the perpetrator firing a weapon from within a motor vehicle and then fleeing. Drive-by shootings allow the perpetrator(s) to quickly strike their target and flee the scene before law enforcement is able to respond.
The invention of the drive-by shooting is attributed to Nestor Makhno, commander of the Revolutionary Insurrection Army of Ukraine at the beginning of the 20th century. He combined horse and carriage with a machine gun in order to quickly assault targets then flee before they could properly react.
Motorcycle ride-by killings were a common form of murder used by drug lord Griselda Blanco during her years controlling the Miami cocaine trade routes in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Blanco herself died by this method after having been shot twice in the head by a motorcyclist in a drive-by shooting in Medellín, Colombia. Drive-by shootings are also included in the Ku Klux Klan's modus operandi.
Chicago Prohibition-era gangster and North Side Gang boss Bugs Moran, was considered a "pioneer" of the drive-by shooting. The notoriously vicious gang performed multiple shootings against their rivals, including the Chicago Outfit led by Al Capone and the Genna brothers.
During the Second Philadelphia Mafia War, two warring factions fought for control of the family; one led by former alleged boss, John Stanfa and the "Young Turks" led by up-and-coming gangster Joey Merlino. On August 5, 1993, Merlino survived a drive-by shooting assassination attempt by two Stanfa gunmen, taking four bullets in the leg and buttocks, while his friend and associate Michael Ciancaglini was shot in the chest and died. On August 31, 1993, a drive by shooting was performed on Stanfa and his son while they were driving on the Schuylkill Expressway. Stanfa escaped uninjured and his son survived being shot in the jaw.
Such shootings are associated with gang violence in urban areas of the United States but also occur in other contexts and other countries. The tactic is also called simply a "drive-by". The primary motivations for a gang-involved drive-by include intimidation, terrorization, and assassination of rival street gang members. Numerous hip hop artists have been targeted in drive-bys; prominent rappers who were killed in such incidents include Tupac Shakur, The Notorious B.I.G., Big L, Smoke Dawg, and Mac Dre. Other rappers, such as 50 Cent and Obie Trice, have survived being assaulted in drive-by shootings.
In 2015, however, Jorja Leap, an UCLA anthropologist studying gang culture, pointed out how drive-by shooting tactics are being replaced by the "walk-up shooting" method, because murders have become more targeted and while driving there's low accuracy in aiming.
In Italy the circulation of firearms is low, and just over a million civilians own a firearm license, so face-to-face shooting or threats with firearms are rare. Drive-by shooting is then common especially in professional criminal context as the statistical incidence says that almost all assaults with firearms are carried out with a running car or moped—this kind of vehicle is used for reasons of better mobility in the narrow city districts. As a matter of fact from the 1970s into the 21st century, the Camorra have been known for performing drive-by shootings during clan or gang wars, or to execute targeted murders.
One of the most striking episodes of a drive-by shooting in Italy was the 2018 Macerata attack, conducted against 6 African people by a far-right extremist, Luca Traini, using an Alfa Romeo 147. However, the attack caused no deaths.
Syrian and Iraqi civil wars
In the first decade of the 21st century, drive-by shootings were also used for assassinations by militants in Iraq, including that of the Waldemar Milewicz and Hatem Kamil. and in Syria.
- Hutson, H. Range; Anglin, Deirdre; Pratts, Michael J. Jr. (3 February 1994). "Adolescents and Children Injured or Killed in Drive-By Shootings in Los Angeles". New England Journal of Medicine. 330 (5): 324–327. doi:10.1056/NEJM199402033300506. PMID 8277953.
- William Henry Chamberlin, Russia's Iron Age, Ayer Publishing, 1970, p201; V. Rapoport, Y. Alekseev, V. G. Treml (translated by B. Adams)
- High Treason: Essays on the History of the Red Army, 1918–1938, Duke University Press, 1985, p68
- Michael Malet, Nestor Makhno in the Russian Civil War, Macmillan, 1982, p85
- Steve Zaloga, Leland S. Ness, Red Army Handbook, 1939–45, Sutton, 1998, p105
- Leon Trotsky, How the Revolution Armed: The Military Writings and Speeches of Leon Trotsky, New Park Publications, 1981, p 295
- Edward R. Kantowicz, The Rage of Nations: The World In The Twentieth Century, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 1999, p173
- Corben, Billy (4 September 2012). "Griselda Blanco: So Long and Thanks for All the Cocaine". Vice. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
- Luscombe, Richard (4 September 2012). "'Godmother of cocaine' shot dead in Colombia". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 March 2014.
- Robles, Frances & Bargent, James (5 September 2012). "The life and death of 'cocaine godmother' Griselda Blanco". The Miami Herald.
- Luscombe, Richard (4 September 2012). "'Godmother of cocaine' shot dead in Colombia (Griselda Blanco, who remained under suspicion for the deaths of all three of her husbands)". The Guardian.
- Fontaine, Smokey (2009). "GOOD NEWS: Victim Of KKK and Drive-By Shooting Opens Successful Restaurant". NewsOne. Retrieved 15 June 2017.
- Hamilton, Matt (28 February 2016). "Mother and son are killed in a drive-by shooting outside a Carson home". Los Angeles Times.
- "3-year-old boy killed in drive-by shooting identified". Cleveland, Ohio: WKYC-TV. 16 September 2015. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
- Hutson, H. Range; Anglin, Deirdre; Kyriacou, Demetrios N. (4 October 1995). "The Epidemic of Gang-Related Homicides in Los Angeles County From 1979 Through 1994". New England Journal of Medicine. 274 (13): 1031. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03530130037025.
- Coleman, C. Vernon II (1 February 2013). "They Shootin': 10 Rappers That Were Targeted in Drive-By Shootings". HipHopWired. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
- Dominguez, Robert (14 September 1996). "Tupac Shakur dies days after drive-by shooting in 1996". Daily News. New York. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
Rapper Tupac Shakur died yesterday from wounds suffered in a Las Vegas drive-by shooting, becoming a casualty of the kind of bullet-sprayed urban violence captured in his lyrics.
- Millner, Denene (10 March 1997). "Biggie Smalls is killed in a drive-by shooting in 1997". Daily News. New York. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
- "Rapper Mac Dre Killed in Kansas City". Billboard. 2 November 2004. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
- "What Really Happened When 50 Cent Was Shot Nine Times In 2000?". www.ladbible.com. 6 July 2016. Retrieved 16 June 2019.
- "Rapper Obie Trice Shot In Detroit". Billboard. Retrieved 16 June 2019.
- "A shift in gang tactics means drive-bys are giving way to walk-ups, observers say". Los Angeles Times. 27 March 2015. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
- "Quante armi ci sono in Italia? (How many firearms are there in Italy?)". La Stampa (in Italian). 6 February 2018. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
- Ambrose, Tom (2008). The Nature of Despotism. New Holland. ISBN 9781847730701.
- "Macerata, spari da auto in corsa, sei feriti: sono tutti di colore. Una vendetta per Pamela: bloccato un uomo avvolto nel tricolore (Macerata, drive-by shooting, six wounded: all black people. Revenge for Pamela: a man wrapped in the Italian flag arrested". Il Messaggero (in Italian). 3 February 2018. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
- "ISIS Claims Drive-by Shooting that Killed 8 in Iraq | Asharq AL-awsat".
- "Top Baghdad official shot dead: Aftermath of attack on Baghdad deputy governor: Attackers rammed the deputy governor's car and shot him dead (Gunmen have assassinated the deputy governor of Baghdad and wounded two of his bodyguards, Iraqi officials say)". BBC News. 7 May 2004. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- "Polish TV crew attacked in Iraq: Waldemar Milewicz was a well-known war correspondent (Gunmen in Iraq have killed a leading Polish journalist and his picture editor in a drive-by shooting)". BBC News. 1 November 2004. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- "ISIS carries out drive-by shooting against rebels in Idlib (photos)".
- "Brutal Drive By Shooting Of Syrian Arab Army Troops Manning Checkpoint".