January 10, 2006 Man Fatally Shot After Entering Wrong HomeIntoxicated Man Fatally Shot After Entering Wrong Apartment by Mistake
The Associated Press
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. Jan 10, 2006 — An intoxicated man who was shot to death last week in an apartment mistook a neighbor's unit for his own and broke in when his key wouldn't work, authorities said.
Hector Soto, 21, had recently moved to the apartment complex and had been out celebrating his upcoming graduation from a trade school, his stepfather, Robert Ward, said Monday.
Soto was "fairly well intoxicated" when his friends drove him home early Friday, said San Bernardino County Sheriff's Sgt. Tom Bradford. All the buildings in the complex look the same, he said.
Soto got into the wrong apartment through an open front window and headed to the bathroom, where he encountered the resident, a 65-year-old state prison counselor, authorities said.
They scuffled and the resident, thinking Soto was an intruder, shot him once. The shooter will not be charged, Bradford said.
"It's tragic. A real mess," he said. "I don't believe Soto intended to hurt anybody."