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Shooting Suspect Arrested in Vista

Vista CA— On Saturday April 25, 2015 at about 4:30 pm, Tri-City Hospital called to report a male adult victim was in the emergency room with a gunshot wound to his right thigh. Deputy Storms conducted her preliminary investigation and determined the victim had been shot by an acquaintance who is a known Vista Home Boys gang member.

The victim claimed he was in his car, speaking with the suspect at the Pepperwood Apartments, 2144 University Drive, Vista, when the suspect pulled a handgun and demanded all of the victim’s money. When the victim tried to drive away, the suspect shot him once in the thigh and fled on foot. The victim drove himself to Tri-City Hospital for treatment.

Vista Gang Detective B. Boisseranc and the Vista Street Narcotics Gang Detail (SNGD), who had responded to investigate the shooting, identified a possible location for the suspect. On Sunday at 12:24 am, a 4th waiver search of 1250 Rhea Place, Vista was conducted.

The suspect, Michael Mercado (03/17/82), was located hiding in a bedroom closet of the home. During a search of the residence, drug paraphernalia and evidence linking Mercado to the shooting were located. Mercado was arrested and transported to the Vista Station for processing. Mercado was later booked into custody for Robbery, Assault with a Deadly Weapon (Handgun) and Probation Violations. Vista SNGD is continuing their investigation.

Anyone with information about this case can call the Sheriff’s Department non-emergency line at (858)565-5200. You can remain anonymous and be eligible for up to a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest. Call Crime Stoppers at (888)580-8477.