An unidentified car shooter has been firing on early morning drivers in San Jose for months, and police are no closer to catching him than when he fired his first bullet.
The serial gunman has been shooting at cars along a stretch of Blossom Hill Road between Poughkeepsie and Monterey roads in San Jose, about an hour from San Francisco, between midnight and 3:30 a.m.
One of the first victims, San Jose resident Mark Pirotta, said he and his friends were fired upon by the unidentified car shooter back in March while they were driving in the early morning hours, according to CBS SF Bay Area.
“My driver’s side window was completely shot out. It’s a form of terrorism. I mean they’re going around town and terrorizing people.”
The next 10 car shootings occurred between May and early August. In each case, the gunman fired a single bullet into the cars speeding along the almost deserted road after midnight. So far no one has been killed, but two people have been injured either by the bullet or from shrapnel.
There have been at least 10 reported car shootings in San Jose; the most recent occurred Thursday around 3:20 a.m. and then again Friday around 12:50 a.m.
The victims don’t appear to be related to each other in any way, but the apparently random car shootings have all happened during the same time of day, otherwise occurring on different days of the week with no known connection, Officer Albert Morales told Mercury News.
“They’re in the general area during the general time, so we’re looking at additional evidence and trying to determine the similarities.”
The first four car shootings weren’t made public until July and after the break of one month have started up again; now police have reported six more shootings in the past month.
Authorities said they didn’t warn the general public about the San Jose car shooter because they needed to confirm the reports being made were accurate, Morales told Mercury News.
“It was very time-consuming to determine whether new incidents were related to the earlier shootings. We had to verify information, re-contact the victims, and do walk-throughs to ensure they happened.”
The San Jose Police Department has assigned a team of officers and detectives to hunt down the unidentified car shooter, but so far they don’t know who the gunman is, where he is firing from or how he’s choosing his victims, Morales told Mercury News.
“Detectives continue to conduct interviews, collect evidence and analyze data in hopes of identifying the suspects.”
Police have so far refused to identify the caliber of the weapon used citing the ongoing investigation.
San Jose police have canvassed the area and distributed flyers, but are no closer to finding the shooter and now they’re asking the public for help. Anyone with information on the identity or location of the car sniper is encouraged to call police Detective Bennett or Detective Perez at (408) 277-4161.
This isn’t the first time gunmen have targeted drivers.
The beltway sniper attacks in 2002 are perhaps the most famous. Ten people were killed and three others wounded in the Washington D.C. area when John Allen Muhammad and his accomplice Lee Boyd Malvo modified their Chevrolet Caprice to serve as a rolling snipers nest.
Then, in 2015 an Arizona sniper was responsible for 11 freeway shootings, one of which injured a teenage girl who was cut by flying glass, according to NBC News.
“And if I would have moved my head. I would have got hit.”
The gunman was never found, although police did arrest 21-year-old Leslie Allen Merritt Jr. before eventually releasing him and dropping all charges. A freeway sniper also opened fire on unsuspecting drivers in Michigan at least twice, although no one was arrested and the attacks stopped.
This year, there have been at least two other freeway shooters reported: one in Tennessee and one in Oregon. In Tennessee, an African American shooter shot four people and killed one while targeting police and whites over anger about police violence.
In Oregon, an unidentified gunman used a high-powered pellet rifle to shoot cars driving along Brownsboro Highway in Eagle Point in May.
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