A 15-year-old boy was shot and wounded by a gunman on a motorbike while he was standing near a McDonald’s restaurant in a busy city centre.
The teen suffered potentially life-changing injuries in the drive-by shooting which is being treated as attempted murder, say police.
A young man who was standing near the teen suffered “superficial” injuries.
Describing it as “an appalling and reckless attack”, police said Coventry city centre was filled with people on nights out when the shooting happened just after 11pm on Saturday.
The motorbike was carrying “a number of people” when it drove past and at least one shot was fired, striking the 15-year-old while he was close to the fast food restaurant.
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Police are analysing CCTV and probing whether the shooting is linked to two other incidents at about the same time.
In one incident, a knife was found in a bag at a restaurant, and in the other a man was robbed of jewellery near a pub.
The 15-year-old boy was rushed to hospital, where he underwent surgery for injuries which could be life-changing but are not life-threatening, said police.
The man who was less seriously injured has been released from hospital.
A West Midlands Police spokesperson said a “major” investigation has been launched, and the incident is being treated as attempted murder.
Shoppers will notice a bigger police presence in the city centre on Sunday as “reassurance” patrols are carried out.
Police have appealed for witnesses or anyone with information or dashcam video to contact detectives.
A number of taxis were in the area when gunfire erupted.
The police spokesperson said: “Detectives are investigating after a boy aged 15 was shot in Coventry city centre.
“Police were called to Cross Cheaping at around 11.10pm yesterday.
“It is believed the youngster was standing near McDonald’s when a motorbike carrying a number of people drove past and a weapon was fired.
“A second person, a man believed to be aged around 20 who was standing near the youngster, suffered superficial injuries and has been released from hospital.
“The 15-year-old was taken to hospital for surgery. His injuries are described as potentially life-changing, but not life-threatening.
“A major investigation has been launched into the shooting, which is being treated as attempted murder.
“Officers are following up a number of lines of enquiries and are particularly keen to hear from anyone who may have dashcam footage from the area, as there were a number of taxis in the city centre at the time.
“People in the city centre will see an increased police presence today as officers carry out reassurance patrols.”
Det Insp Harjit Ubhi, from Force CID, said: “This was an appalling and reckless attack in a part of the city centre which was busy with people enjoying nights out.
“We are already going through CCTV and identifying witnesses, and are determined to bring the people responsible to justice as swiftly as possible.”
The spokesperson added: “Officers are also trying to establish if there are any links with two other incidents at around the same time.
“A knife was recovered from a bag in the Cosy Club on Cathedral Lanes and three people were arrested at around 11.30am, and an 18-year-old man was robbed of jewellery near the nearby Litten Tree pub.
“Anyone with information has been asked to contact police via Live Chat at west-midlands.police.uk, via 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”