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Man accused of setting off fireworks in Vista Target sought

Posted at 6:54 AM, Feb 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-04 09:54:44-05

VISTA, Calif. (CNS) - Deputies asked for help Wednesday identifying a man accused of setting off fireworks inside a Target store in Vista.

Authorities were called about 9 p.m. Tuesday to the store in the 3100 block of Business Park Drive, where multiple 911 callers reported a possible active shooter inside the store after hearing what sounded liked gunshots, the San Diego County Sheriff's Department said.

Numerous other nearby law enforcement agencies responded to the scene and the store was evacuated.

RELATED: Fireworks set off inside Vista Target store, prompts law enforcement response

"After a thorough search, no injured victims or suspects were found," the sheriff's department said. "Deputies did find a small trash can laying on its side in a store aisle. Inside of the trash can and scattered all over the floor were several burned and exploded firecrackers."

Surveillance footage from the store shows a person walking down the aisle where the trash can was found before a "large flash of light is seen and the suspect runs," the department said.

The suspect was described as a man wearing a black cap with a white and blue logo, black sweater with a white undershirt, black pants and black shoes with white soles. He was also wearing a black neck gaiter, deputies said.

Authorities are investigating whether a similar incident that took place at the Ross Dress for Less store in the 32000 block of Temecula Parkway in Temecula Sunday was related to Tuesday's explosion.

"The San Diego County Sheriff's Department and all law enforcement agencies take incidents like this very seriously," the department said. "While thankfully no one was hurt, setting off fireworks inside any business can lead to injury or even death."

Anyone with information on the incident can call the sheriff's department at 858-565-5200.