Study of Drive-By Shootings Reveals Data on Victims, Time, Location
Violence Policy Center (VPC) today released the second edition of Drive-By
America, a national analysis of drive-by shootings. The study,
the most comprehensive analysis of its type, tallied news stories from
the 50 states and the District of Columbia from July through December
2008 to identify data and trends associated with drive-by shootings, including
the number of incidents by state, the number of victims killed and injured,
as well as time of day and location. Findings of the study (available
- During the six-month
period covered in the report, 733 drive-by shooting incidents were reported,
claiming 154 lives and injuring 631 individuals.
- California led
the nation in the number of drive-by shootings with 148 shootings, killing
40 and injuring 129. Following California were: Texas, 60 drive-by shootings,
killing six and injuring 52; Florida, 48 drive-by shootings, killing
10 and injuring 42; Illinois, 38 drive-by shootings, killing 18 and
injuring 53; and, Washington, 38 drive-by shootings, killing three and
- Nearly one out
of five (18 percent) of those killed or injured were under the age of
- In nearly half
(46 percent) of the incidents, the victims were at a residence (either
indoors or outdoors).
- Seventeen percent
of the incidents involved shooting at another vehicle.
- Forty percent of
all drive-by shootings occurred between the hours of 7:00 PM and midnight.
A third (33 percent) were between midnight and 7:00 AM.
- Drive-by shootings
peaked in the month of August and then declined as the months turned
VPC Executive Director
and study co-author Josh Sugarmann states, “Drive-by shooting victims
are frequently children or other innocent victims caught in gunfire apparently
intended for someone else. Our analysis represents the absolute floor
as far as the number of drive-bys that occur each day. The actual number
of incidents and victims is most likely far higher”
Stating that “additional
research on the national level collecting and analyzing data on drive-by
shootings is necessary to identify effective prevention strategies,” the
VPC analysis offers the following recommendations:
- The feasibility
of adding drive-by shooting as a category to the Uniform Crime Reports
should be explored.
- Communities that
experience a significant number of drive-by shootings should consider
establishing their own data collection mechanism.
- Drive-by shootings
are just one symptom of the increasing lethality of firearms available
to the general public. State and federal policies should focus on limiting
the caliber and capacity of firearms marketed to the general public.
The Violence Policy Center is
a national educational organization working to stop gun death and injury.
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Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Violence Policy Center
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