Boy, 12, killed in drive-by shooting in French city

15th December 2009, Comments 0 comments

A 12-year-old boy was cut down in a hail of gunfire in a drive-by shooting, French prosecutors said Monday, as rivalry between groups of youths from two city districts turned bloody.

LYON - Another youth aged 17 was wounded in Sunday's shooting in a rundown neighbourhood of the central city of Lyon.

"It was a banal dispute, completely pointless, between youths from different districts," an official from the city prosecutor's office said, insisting the shooting was not evidence of a war between organised gangs.

Chief police commissioner Marianne Charret-Lassagne said one man had been taken into custody on Monday.

She said the man "is not the alleged perpetrator" but "an important witness as he was involved in the fighting that preceded the gunfire."

Investigators said trouble erupted after a gang of youths insulted a young woman from another neighbourhood. She complained to friends, who shortly afterwards launched a revenge mission.

Police believe between three and five attackers opened fire from a car at a group of youths gathered outside a row of shops and cafes. Investigators counted impact marks from 14 rounds at the scene.

Commissioner Charret-Lassagne said that a rifle and machine gun were used in the shooting and that the getaway car had its licence plates covered up.

Neither of the two young victims had criminal records.


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