Driver almost killed in Piedmont road-rage shooting

A driver was almost killed Tuesday morning in Piedmont after someone in another vehicle opened fire on him during a road-rage shooting, police said.

Witnesses who wished to withhold their identities told KTVU they heard numerous shots near Oakland and Olive avenues at about 7 a.m.

"Five shots, rapid succession and I heard squealing tires," said one neighbor.

"It was just a scary sound, because I knew it wasn't fireworks like everybody claims when they hear those noises," another witness said.

It all began with a dispute between two drivers near Santa Rosa Avenue and Vernon Street in Oakland at about 6:45 a.m. Tuesday.

"The victim vehicle was trying to enter the roadway from their driveway, there may have been a near-collision," said Piedmont Police Chief Jeremy Bowers.

Towers Nicastro heard the commotion.

"I didn't hear any yelling, but I remember two cars just honking for a while, woke me up," Nicastro said.

The victim drove toward Interstate 580 but turned around and began heading toward the Piedmont Police Department when he realized he was being followed by three people in a newer white Alfa Romero Giulia.

Bowers said the two cars were both in motion when someone in an Alfa Romeo began shooting at the victim's Acura directly in front of it.

"The suspect started firing, believe the suspect fired about five to six rounds at the victim's vehicle, striking it twice," the chief said.

Bowers said the victim escaped with his life. One shot hit the driver's side of his Acura.

"Here's how close we came to a homicide," the chief said. "The second bullet struck the trunk. That round went through the vehicle and came to rest in the driver's headrest."

Piedmont police now searching its license plate readers and cameras for any other leads on the Alfa Romeo.

"Rare enough to begin with, right? Beautiful cars, but… my stereotype of an Alfa driver is not someone who would do that, let's put it that way," said one man who heard the gunfire.

Police are warning drivers to keep it cool. 

"It is not worth it. Do not engage with aggressive drivers out there," Bowers said.

"Anybody's who's willing to try to kill somebody because of a disagreement about driving — we need to get that person off the street," he said.