A man has been shot dead Thursday evening on one of the Bay Area's businest roads at the height of rush hour traffic.

  • Deputies say shooting death was targeted
  • Victim was reportedly a gang member
  • Motocyclists allegedly pulled up on the victim

Pasco County deputies are investigating the shooting death that happened on the intersection of Suncoast Parkway and State Road 54 around 5 p.m.

They say they believe this is a targeted hit, and Sheriff Chris Nocco called the incident a "brazen act of violence."

Sheriff Nocco said a man with known ties to a motorcycle gang was sitting in a truck at the light when two people on motorcycle pulled up next to him.

Witnesses told deputies that the motorcyclists opened fire, shot the man in the truck and then took off on their bikes.

"Our fear is that a random, innocent person gets hurt. The time of day this occurred, they're a lot of people out, there's a lot of kids out of school now or getting out," said Sheriff Nocco. "This is a time of rush hour traffic."

In fact, Sheriff Nocco said it all unfolded inches away from other cars.

"This must have been frightening for other people," Sheriff Nocco said. "This is something that they only see in a movie or TV, and it was playing right in front of their eyes."

Sheriff Nocco also said it is critical to find the suspects as soon as possible, and that they are armed and dangerous.

"We do not want this war to escalate, if there is (one) ... Our biggest fear is that a random person gets involved in this mess," he said.

Authorities also said the suspects had nazi lightning bolts on their motorcycles and bandanas.

Deputies are actively looking for the motorcyclists. They realize witnesses may be scared to come forward, but they ask anyone with information to contact the Pasco Sheriff's Office Crime Tips Line at 1-800-706-2488.

They are not releasing the name of the victim or the gang he was associated with at this time.

Stay with Spectrum Bay News 9 for the latest updates.