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Teen with special needs fatally shot in front of mother after refusing to give up shoes

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LOS ANGELES -- Family members are mourning the loss of a 19-year-old with special needs who was shot and killed in front of his mother at a car wash in Los Angeles after, according to her, the teen refused to give up his red shoes.

Relatives and friends gathered at the car wash in remembrance of the slain teen, bringing flowers and balloons and carrying signs to honor the young man. Some wore shirts that read “Rest in Paradise Tavin Price,” though multiple family members identified him as Tevin.

Price died after being shot multiple times on Friday morning near the intersection of Florence and 11th avenues in the Hyde Park area of South L.A., according to KTLA.

The incident began when Price, who had gone to the car wash with his mother, left the business and went to a nearby market to buy cigarettes, according to Det. Eric Crosson of the Los Angeles Police Department. While Price was there, someone approached him and asked the teen about the color of his clothing.

“He was confronted by someone who inquired about his possible gang affiliation because of some red clothing he was wearing,” Crosson said. “He denied being a gang member and went back to where his mother was.”

His mother, Jennifer Rivers, said Price was confronted again at the car wash by someone who told him to take his shoes off.

“He didn’t take them off, he ran to me, and then I said ‘Let’s go,’” she told KTLA on Monday. “And I was getting in the car. Before we can get in the car, the boy ran behind my car and shot him in the back twice and in the chest. ”

After hearing the gunshots, Rivers turned around and chased the fleeing gunman, “I just kept saying, ‘Stop. Why did you shoot my son?'”

Unable to catch him, she then ran back to her youngest child, who told her he did not want to die.

“Watching my son beg me, ‘Mommy, I don’t want to die. I do not want to die, mommy. Help me,’” Rivers recalled, her voice choking up. “That’s hard for me.”

Both police and family members stated that Price was not involved in gangs. Crosson said it appeared Price was “victimized” because he “wore the wrong color in the wrong neighborhood.”

At the vigil, he was described as a fun and loving young man who “loved his family more than anything,” said his cousin, Ceritha Daily

Price was killed just days before he would’ve turned 20 years old, and at one point, those gathered at the vigil sang happy birthday in his honor.

His family has expressed hope that the person who fatally shot Price will be arrested and brought to justice.

“I want to see them spend the rest of their life in jail and feel how our family feels right about now,” Daily said.

The gunman was apparently caught on surveillance cameras in the area, but detectives have not released the video.

Anyone with information about the shooting can call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

Rivers has also set up a GoFundMe page to help raise money for her son’s funeral.

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6 comments

  • dg54321

    Sad. All that gun control seems to be doing a great job over there in LA. This is what happens when criminals are the only ones that can get guns….they control everything, because there just will never be enough cops.

      • dg54321

        Or just do what they did for the Hilltop area in Tacoma during the 90s; bring in a task force composed of the FBI and local agencies, dedicated solely to gang cleanup, and let them do their jobs.

        • Danny Rafael

          Couldn’t do it today, the whole “hands up, don’t shoot” thing with Sharpton, Obama & Co. racing to every city where black criminals aren’t treated with kid gloves. The first arrest would bring out charges of police brutality. Maybe bring Rodney King out of the hole he’s crawled into. I also think Hilltop took a lot of concerned citizens working with the police to clean up their neighborhood, today it doesn’t matter what the crime, for the most part black citizens aren’t talking to investigators.

          • dg54321

            Sad, but true. We’ve lost our minds in this country, where criminals have more rights than their victims.

  • today was a good day

    The suspect is described as a white male adult, approximately 30-years-old, medium height, thin build, with a beard. He was last seen wearing a black beanie, blue long-sleeve button-down shirt, and light-colored cargo shorts. He was also seen carrying a dark-colored messenger bag. The suspect may be riding a light blue 10-speed-style bicycle