15-Year-Old Involved in a Shoot-Out with Tulare Police Has Died

FRESNO, Calif. The shootout ended just a couple blocks from where Elie Torres lived. Officers say he was using a high powered assault rifle when he fired at police.

Torres' mother is outraged that Tulare Police shot and killed her son, who was supposed to turn 16 on Thursday.

A small memorial and a sign asking for donations to help pay for 15-year-old Elie Torres' funeral ... are in front of the house where the Tulare teenager used to live.

Elie's mother, Irene Rodriguez said, "Instead of celebrating his birthday I'm making funeral arrangements for my son."

Irene Rodriguez says her son was supposed to turn 16 this week. As she clutched a white teddy bear her son used to sleep with, she says she's horrified Elie was shot and killed during a shootout with Tulare Police officers Sunday morning.

"I know they have special training but they took brutal force they shot my son in the head," said Rodriguez.

Torres and other family members and friends held a car wash all day on Monday to raise money for funeral expenses. They say the 15-year-old was taking classes at the adult school so he could spend more time with his one-year-old son, Elie Torres Junior.

Rodriguez has hired an attorney while the district attorney's office investigates the shooting. She says her son was trying to surrender when he was shot. "I seen my son had his hands in the air and they still shot him," said Rodriguez.

While Rodriguez wouldn't comment on how her son may have gotten a weapon ... Tulare Police say Elie Torres was armed with a dangerous, high powered assault rifle.

Sgt. Richard House said, "That you generally don't see, these weapons are not 22 caliber weapons they're very large caliber weapons."

Sgt. House says officers had originally arrived on the scene for a call of shots fired. He says Torres then shot at officers before running down the street and firing at them again.

"He did point the weapon at the officers at the point he took concealment and that's what created the second shooting situation," Sgt. House.

Police aren't talking about any previous criminal history with Torres ... or whether he was involved in a gang.

The Tulare officers involved in the shooting are on paid administrative leave until the DA's office completes its investigation.

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