Investigation launched after rockets fired at pedestrians in ‘drive-by shooting’

West Midlands Police is investigating “shocking” video footage showing a large firework being used to launch rockets at people in a “drive-by shooting”.

Nov 5, 2020
By Paul Jacques
A still from the video showing firework rockets launched from a car at passers-by. Picture West Midlands Police

The clip has emerged on social media showing up to 40 flares being fired from a display-size firework as a car is driven along Coventry Road in Birmingham.

People are seen ducking for cover as the rockets are discharged through the car window near the Old Bill and Bull pub.

West Midlands Police believes footage of the “hugely reckless” incident was filmed in the last few days.

“Officers have already carried out local inquiries and will be seizing CCTV for examination,” it added.

Inspector Simon Graham, in charge of policing in Yardley constituency, has promised they “will take action” against the offenders.

“The footage shows a large firework – the kind that would be used at public displays – effectively being used in a drive-by shooting as a potentially lethal weapon,” he said.

“Letting off fireworks in the street is hugely reckless. Had one of those rockets exploded in someone’s face we could be looking at a wounding investigation or even worse.

“This is not just people having some fun. What I’ve seen on the video is really dangerous and we will take action. Offenders are putting people in danger and they run the risk of being arrested and jailed.”

West Midlands Police said it was the latest in a series of shocking incidents involving fireworks, including one on Saturday (October 31) when rockets were launched at motorists and a police car in Cape Hill.

“On that occasion a 16-year-old boy was detained and taken home after he was caught carrying fireworks; he will be voluntary interviewed at a later date,” it added.

The force now teamed up with West Midlands Fire Service to issue a stark warning about the dangers of fireworks misuse.

West Midlands Fire Service Area Commander Steve Vincent said: “Fireworks are explosives, with the potential to cause serious burns and injury. People misusing them in this way need to think about the very real dangers to themselves and others.

“Our health colleagues are again under mounting pressure because of the pandemic. That’s why we’re asking everyone to think twice about using fireworks at all this year.”

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