A man who allegedly fired multiple gunshots during a drive-by shooting at Stanford Shopping Center on Monday evening has been arrested, Palo Alto police said. He was found to be a former employee of Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, where a glass window was damaged by the gunfire.
Zachary Michael Ginsberg, 32, of San Jose, had recently been sending threatening text messages to his former supervisor after an interpersonal conflict. Ginsberg's former supervisor was working at the restaurant when the shooting occurred, police said Tuesday in a press release.
The shopping center was temporarily shut down for 45 minutes after at least two shots were fired from a vehicle. One hit the glass window next to the entrance at Fleming's Prime Steakhouse at 180 El Camino Real and a second bullet struck an unoccupied vehicle in the parking lot. The restaurant was open for business at the time, and customers were inside. No one was struck by the bullets, police said.
A witness saw a person in a black Chevrolet Camaro driving north on El Camino Real extend a pistol out of the driver's side window and open fire. The location is near a public soccer field. The witness could not describe the suspect.
Detectives obtained a warrant for Ginsburg's arrest on Tuesday morning on suspicion of attempted murder and shooting at an occupied building, which are both felonies. They arrested him without incident at about 9:55 a.m. in the 2600 block of Augustine Drive in Santa Clara. Police also processed his car, a black 2018 Chevrolet Camaro, for evidence at that site.
Investigators also served a search warrant at Ginsberg's home in the 300 block of Crescent Village Circle in San Jose. They recovered the firearm, an unregistered 9mm polymer handgun, commonly known as a "ghost gun," which police believe was used in the shooting.
Officers booked Ginsberg into the Santa Clara County Main Jail. Police suspect he acted alone, and there is no evidence that anyone else was in his car during the crime, they said.
In a statement regarding Ginsberg's arrest, Fleming's Prime Steakhouse said "We are grateful for the swift investigative work of the Palo Alto Police department and thankful they were able to find the person responsible quickly."
"The safety and security of our guests and employees is a priority and although we've been told there is no immediate threat, we are taking additional security measures, including bringing in private security," the company said in an earlier statement prior to the arrest.
Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call the Palo Alto Police Department's 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to email@example.com or sent via text message or voicemail to 650-383-8984.