LOS ANGELES -- Family members in South Los Angeles are mourning the loss of a 19-year-old man with special needs who was shot and killed in front of his mother. The man's mother says he was shot after refusing to give up his red shoes.
Family members have identified the 19-year-old man as Tevin Price. He was shot and killed at a car wash in the Hyde Park area of South Los Angeles.
Police say the incident began when Price, who had gone to the car wash with his mother, left the car wash and went to a nearby market to buy cigarettes. There, someone apparently approached him and asked about the color of his clothing.
"Someone who inquired about his possible gang affiliation because of some red clothing he was wearing," Detective Eric Crosson with the Los Angeles Police Department told KTLA.
Price left the market and headed back to the car wash.
Price's mother says he was confronted again by someone who told him to take his shoes off.
"He didn't take them off. He ran to me, and I said 'let's go.' Before we can get in the car, the boy ran behind my car and shot him in the back twice, and in the chest," Price's mother, Jennifer Rivers told KTLA.
Rivers says she chased the gunman.
"I kept saying 'stop! Why did you shoot my son?'" Rivers said. “Watching my son beg me, ‘Mommy, I don’t want to die. I do not want to die, Mommy. Help me.' That’s hard for me.”
Police and family members say Price was not involved in gangs.
Detective Crosson says it appears Price simply wore the wrong color in the wrong neighborhood.
Tevin Price was killed just days before he would have turned 20.
The gunman remains at large.