The shooting happened on the 1100 block of South Hicks Avenue in East Los Angeles. A young witness who was inside the van during the shootings spoke to Eyewitness News.
To friends and relatives of little Michael and Michelle, it is beyond belief that anyone would want to harm the 5-year-old twins, much less their own father. Yet they describe a stormy relationship between Salvador Acevedo and the twins' mother, Iris Oseguera -- breaking up, then reconciling, over and over.
On the eve of Mother's Day it all blew up, according to the witness, who was present when Acevedo reached for a gun, shot Oseguera and then the twins.
"Michael was holding my hands when he got shot. He was holding really tight, but I let go of his hands," said the witness, a cousin of the twins, who was in the van when the fatal argument began.
The cousin and her mother, Oseguera's sister, share the story because they say they want people to know the truth. Eyewitness News chose to protect her identity.
"There was an argument between both of them because he told her that he wanted to stay with the kids and that he didn't want to lose her or the kids," said the witness.
Patty Anariba, Oseguera's sister, says Acevedo was not the angel some say he was, that he planned it all. She says he gathered the twins, their cousin, their mother, Iris, and two teenage sons she had with a different man.
First he took them to the movies. Then in the family van with the five children present, he allegedly asked Oseguera to take him back. She refused, and he fired.
"She was holding on to the wound, she was trying to stop the blood, then he shot her again and then my cousin Derek was holding her head, and he was yelling at him to stop," said the cousin.
Acevedo drove the three teens to their aunt's house. He fled. But before deputies could catch up with him, they say he turned the gun on himself.
At Workman Elementary School in La Puente, crisis counselors were on hand Monday and planned to be there through the week.