Father of Rowland Heights shooting victim speaks out

Friday, January 1, 2016
Ernesto Calzadilla, 27, pictured in undated photos (left and right) provided by family members.
Ernesto Calzadilla, 27, pictured in undated photos (left and right) provided by family members.

ROWLAND HEIGHTS, Calif. (KABC) -- The father of a shooting victim killed in Rowland Heights on New Year's Eve spoke out on Friday.

"We were supposed to celebrate New Year's Day," said Ronald Calzadilla.

A heartbroken father went back to the spot where he said his son was shot and killed.

"That's his backpack. This is the beer that we bought to celebrate New Year's Day," Calzadilla said. "We were supposed to go celebrate."

Calzadilla said he and his 27-year-old son Ernesto Calzadilla went to a house on Batson Avenue in Rowland Heights to spend time with friends before ringing in the New Year.

Ronald left in the evening, but his son stayed. He said Ernesto's friend's father got in an argument with someone at the party and went on a shooting spree.

Authorities confirmed that around 8:30 last night, a 54-year old man shot and killed three people at the house, including two women aged 54 and 48. They said the shooter's 33-year-old son was able to wrestle the gun away before shooting and killing his dad.

"He got over a hundred guns in the house," Calzadilla said.

The devastated father lives about a block away. He said he knew the shooter and should have seen this coming.

"Once he'd take like two, three beers, the first thing I noticed every time I came here, he had a gun collection and started loading all the guns. He'd start walking around with an AK-47 he used to shoot in the house," Calzadilla added.

That house, now a horrific reminder for one father who said he still can't come to terms with what happened.

"I said 'Let me see him because I know my son is not dead,'" Calzadilla said. "'I know he's going to come home and talk to me again.' I just don't want to believe it."