Redlands police are seeking a lone gunman in connection with a shooting at an apartment complex playground that left two teens dead and two others seriously wounded.
The incident has potential racial overtones, authorities said, because the victims are black and the unidentified suspect is Latino.
Quinn McCaleb, 17, and Andrew Jackson, 16, both of Redlands, died of wounds suffered when an assailant opened fire late Wednesday on the group in the 900 block of Oxford Drive. A fifth teenager was not hit.
The wounded teens, whose names were not released, are expected to survive, said Carl Baker, a spokesman for the Redlands Police Department.
McCaleb's mother, Shanita Williams, said she was attending college classes when she got word: "I went straight to the site, and my baby was lying dead under a tree."
She described her son as a friendly teenager with a winning smile who liked video games, hanging out with friends and taking part in pickup football games -- he had once been on the school football team.
She said her son, a former Redlands High student, had gone through a "rough patch" but had just returned to an academic program, determined to finish high school and either attend college or go into the military.
The crime and gang situation has worsened in the neighborhood, she said.
"He had been chased home from school," she said. "He had been in several altercations with Hispanic gang members."
She said her son was not involved in gangs and, to her knowledge, neither were the other victims.
Police said they have yet to determine a motive or whether the shooting was gang-related. Baker did confirm, however, that a Latino gang and a black gang are active in the area.
On Thursday, police released a sketch of the suspect, who was described as a Latino about 17 to 20 years old, of medium height and weighing 150 to 170 pounds. Anyone with information is asked to call Sgt. Mark Hardy at (909) 798-7545.