Oceanside Police headquarters. Courtesy of the department

A 23-year-old man was behind bars Friday on suspicion of using a pellet gun to break the window of an Oceanside business that had put up a sign supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, police said.

Steve Soto, 23, of Carlsbad allegedly drove by Bliss Tea & Treats, 301 Mission Ave., around 7:10 p.m. on June 4, then fired a pellet gun out the window of his vehicle, shattering a window at the business and causing more than $1,800 in damage, Oceanside police Sgt. John McKean said.

The business had a sign in the window at the time that read: “Black owned, we stand with you,” McKean said.

Surveillance video helped detectives identify the vehicle used in the crime and Soto, who was arrested Wednesday evening at an undisclosed location, the sergeant said.

Soto was booked into the Vista Detention Facility around 7:40 p.m. Wednesday on suspicion of vandalism, attempting to dissuade a victim or witness from testifying and assault with a deadly weapon, according to jail records.

The assault allegation stems from an incident during which Soto is accused of shooting a disabled man in the face with a pellet gun, McKean said.

Soto was being held in lieu of $90,000 bail pending arraignment, scheduled for July 31.

–City News Service

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