RIALTO (CBSLA.com) — The family of a 20-year-old man fatally shot by a Rialto homeowner disputes claims he was trying to break into the residence.
Rialto police were called to the 1000 block of North Primrose on Saturday night and found Andy Garcia lying in the backyard.
KCAL9’s Brittney Hopper reports authorities concluded Garcia was an intruder shot dead by a homeowner. His relatives, however, say it was a deadly misunderstanding.
Maxine Flores told KCAL9 her son left the house after getting into an argument with his younger sister.
She believes her son was hiding in their neighbor’s backyard when relatives went looking for him in the neighborhood around 11:30 p.m.
Shortly after, police say, they received a 911 call from a female homeowner saying someone was trying to break into her home through a window.
Police say the male homeowner got into an altercation with Garcia and shots were fired.
“We heard gunshots,” Flores said. “I did [think it was my son.] … When I asked the police, they didn’t give me any answers,” she said.
A candlelight vigil was held Monday at the Flores home, down the street from where the shooting happened.
The matriarch said her son was a good young man. She believes the shooting should never have happened.
“You were so wrong. You guys were so wrong. You took an innocent life,” she said, echoed by the shooting victim’s sister, Miranda Garcia.
“He had a smile that lit up the whole room,” she said.
Neighbors say the shooter’s family has moved out.
No charges have been filed.