For Release: Monday, July 30, 2007
Washington, D.C.–The Violence Policy Center (VPC) today released Drive-By America, a first-of-its kind national analysis of drive-by shootings. The study tallied news stories from the 50 states and the District of Columbia from July through December 2006 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 include:
- During the six-month period covered in the report, 549 drive-by shooting incidents were reported, claiming 156 lives and injuring 465 individuals.
- California led the nation in the number of drive-by shootings with 115 shootings, killing 51 and injuring 123. Following California were: Florida, 57 drive-by shootings, killing 18 and injuring 47; Texas, 56 drive-by shootings, killing seven and injuring 41; Illinois, 24 drive-by shootings, killing 11 and injuring 29; and, Ohio, 20 drive-by shootings, killing three and injuring 20.
- Nearly a quarter (23 percent) of those killed or injured were under the age of 18.
- In more than half (55 percent) of the incidents, the victims were at a residence (either indoors or outdoors);
- More than one out of five (22 percent) incidents involved shooting at another vehicle;
- Nearly half (47 percent) of all drive-by shootings occurred between the hours of 7:00 PM and midnight. More than a quarter (27 percent) were between midnight and 7:00 AM.
- Drive-by shootings peaked in the month of July and continued to decline as the months turned colder.
VPC Executive Director and study co-author Josh Sugarmann states, “Drive-by gunfire is devastating families and neighborhoods. The fact that the total number of drive-by shootings that occur each day in America is most likely far higher than our report found only adds to the despair.”