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Central Calif. man in reservation shooting dies from wounds

Hector Celaya, 31, is shown in this booking photo by the Tulare County Sheriff's Department. (Tulare County Sheriff's Department)
December 9, 2012 12:00:00 AM PST
A Central California man who deputies say shot his daughters and killed three others at an Indian reservation died Sunday from his injuries in a shootout with police.

Tulare County deputies received reports of shots fired Saturday night from the Tule Indian Reservation in Porterville.

Responding deputies found the bodies of two men and one woman on the reservation. Authorities also found a wounded male juvenile at the scene. His condition was not known.

The person who reported the gunfire to deputies also told investigators that the shooting suspect fled the scene in a green Jeep Cherokee. He was identified as 31-year-old Hector Celaya.

Deputies found Celaya early Sunday morning by tracking his cellphone. They tried to pull him over but he did not comply and a chase ensued. Sheriff's officials say when Celaya finally stopped his car, he fired his weapon at detectives, who returned fire.

Celaya was transported to an area hospital for treatment following the gun battle but shortly succumbed to his injuries.

Deputies say Celaya's two young daughters, ages 5 and 8, were in the car with him at the time. Detectives say Celaya had shot the girls earlier. One girl suffered life-threatening injuries while the other girl was less seriously hurt.

The reservation where the shooting took place is about 50 miles north of Bakersfield. The circumstances surrounding the shooting were under investigation.


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