A drive-by shooting is a type of assault that usually involves the perpetrator's 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 Insurrectionary 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, with the Tommy gun being the weapon of choice. The notoriously vicious gang performed multiple shootings against their rivals, including the South Side gang 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 killed. 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.
In 1992, the Mexican Mafia prison gang announced an edict that no Sureno gangs were to commit drive-by shootings, in order to avoid police crackdowns throughout neighborhoods in southern California. Those who broke the edict were to be greenlighted for assault or even death in the California prison system.
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 and Mac Dre. Other rappers, such as 50 Cent and Obie Trice, have survived being assaulted in drive-by shootings.
In 2015, 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 is low accuracy in aiming.
The primary motivations for a gang-involved drive-by include intimidation, terrorization, and assassination of rival street gang members. Such shootings are associated with gang violence in urban areas of the United States but also occur in other contexts. The tactic is also called simply a "drive-by".
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. 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 Macerata shooting, conducted against six 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.
- Cantabrian circle
- Hit and run
- Vehicular violence in the United States
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- Coleman, C. Vernon II (1 February 2013). "They Shootin': 10 Rappers That Were Targeted in Drive-By Shootings". HipHopWired. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
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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.
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- "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".
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- "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".