Destruction Arrest for Shattered Door

OCEAN CITY – A Florida man was arrested on malicious destruction of property charges last weekend after allegedly shattering a glass door at a downtown bar following an argument inside.

Around 1:50 a.m. last Friday, Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officers responded to a downtown bar at 8th Street for a reported malicious destruction of property that had already occurred. Communications advised a male suspect, later identified as Vincent Johnston, 23, of Fruitland Park, Fla., had kicked in the front door of the establishment and left the area on foot.

As the arriving officers approached the bar, they discovered the exit door on the north side of the building was shattered with glass all over the ground and drops of blood leading from the door, according to police reports. The officers spoke with a bouncer who advised Johnston and a female had been in the bar and that they had become disorderly, according to police reports.

According to police reports, the female, at one point, slapped Johnston and bar security staff removed him from the bar. One bouncer reportedly told police while Johnston was being removed, he kicked the glass door on his way out. The bouncer told police Johnston returned and kicked the glass door multiple times, according to police reports.

The bouncer reportedly told police he pushed Johnston away and went back inside when he heard the glass door shatter and Johnston run away to the north. Two bouncers gave chase, but could not locate Johnston, according to police reports.

A bar manager showed officers video surveillance footage, which showed Johnston and the female arguing in the bar. Footage from the exterior of the building showed Johnston being ejected from the bar. The footage showed the bouncer open the door and push Johnston from the property. Johnston then returned and punched the door with a closed fist and shattering the glass before running across Philadelphia Avenue.

An OCPD officer located Johnston in the area of 9th Street passed out and bleeding from his hands. According to police reports, Johnston was covered in blood and vomit and could not sit up on his own, so he was transported by Ocean City EMS to Atlantic General Hospital.

About three hours later at 4:50 a.m., OCPD officers were in the back of a convenience store at 120th Street when they reportedly heard a male yelling loudly at a female near the front of the store. The officers recognized the female as the same person who had been involved in the bar argument at 8th Street hours earlier, according to police reports.

The officers also recognized Johnston who was behind the wheel of an SUV. The officers attempted to stop Johnston, who drove out of the convenience store lot and onto Coastal Highway. The vehicle then turned around and traveled north in the southbound lanes of Coastal Highway before turning back into the convenience store lot, according to police reports.

OCPD officers stopped Johnston at that point. He was reportedly still covered in blood and vomit. Johnston told police there had been no assault and he only tried to get back into the bar at 8th Street earlier to get the female. He told police he did not mean to break the glass, and that he only ran because he was scared, according to police reports.

Johnston reportedly told police he was picked up from the hospital by the female and another male, which started another argument with the female. However, he again told police no assault had occurred. OCPD officers interviewed the female, who had changed her clothes since the incident at the downtown bar.

The female told police no assault had occurred at either the downtown bar or the uptown convenience store and that Johnston breaking the bar’s glass door was an accident. Based on the evidence, Johnston was arrested and charged with malicious destruction of property and a noise violation.

About The Author: Shawn Soper

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Shawn Soper has been with The Dispatch since 2000. He began as a staff writer covering various local government beats and general stories. His current positions include managing editor and sports editor. Growing up in Baltimore before moving to Ocean City full time three decades ago, Soper graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1981 and from Towson University in 1985 with degrees in mass communications with a journalism concentration and history.