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October 25, 2021

Suspect arrested on suspicion of attempted murder

WATSONVILLE—A man accused of shooting at several people outside of a Watsonville home was arrested within 10 minutes of the reported Saturday afternoon incident.

Stephen Vitela

Watsonville Police Department spokeswoman Michelle Pulido said Stephen Vitela, 23, fired several rounds at people outside of a home on the 200 block of Center Street. A mother and her young child were also inside a car that was parked in the driveway of the home, Pulido said.

WPD officers arrested Vitela on suspicion of attempted murder a few blocks away from the scene. Officers found him behind a parked car and located the gun he allegedly used stashed underneath the vehicle.

No one was injured.

Detectives believe the shooting was gang-motivated, Pulido said.

Vitela is facing several other felony charges, and is being held in lieu of $500,000 bail, jail records show.

Anyone with additional information about the incident is asked to call WPD Detective Gustavo Zamora at 831-768-3355.

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