Affidavit: Friends were making U-turn when business owner shot Tyler teen to death (2024)

A Tyler teenager and his friends were making a U-turn behind a local business when police say the business owner fatally shot the teen.

An arrest warrant affidavit states Rawly "Eli" Sanchez, 19, was shot in the back of the head around 10 p.m. on the Fourth of July when he and his friends were turning around behind Bautista Auto Sales on U.S. Highway 271 in Tyler after they'd made a wrong turn.

Sanchez's friends immediately took him to a local emergency room, but he died from his injuries, according to police. Seferino Bautista-Renteria, 35, the owner of Bautista Auto Sales, is charged with murder in Sanchez's death.

Corina Lizbeth Bautista, 35, was also arrested in the case. She is charged with tampering with evidence and is accused of hiding a vehicle connected to the shooting, according to the affidavit.

That night, Sanchez and his friends were leaving a friend's home and drivingn south on 271. The driver turned onto Old Gladewater Highway, but they realized it would not lead to Montgomery Gardens. So the driver made a U-Turn behind Bautista's Auto Sales.

The driver told police he said he saw a person come out a building at the business with what looked like an AK-47-style rifle. The driver said the person shot several times at them with one of the rounds hitting Sanchez, who was in the backseat of the vehicle.

Around the same time the shooting was reported, Tyler police officers were out investigating a deadly conduct incident and drove by Bautista Auto Sales to see a white Ford Explorer outside the business with bullet holes. The responding officer checked the area but didn't see anyone around, the document states.

But 25 minutes later, the vehicle was gone, the police officer said. He told deputies what he observed, and around that time, Corina Bautista came to the business, according to the affidavit.

She told deputies the Explorer was never there, but when shown video of the Explorer she changed her story, saying someone shot at them. Investigators believe she did this in attempt to conceal the vehicle, according to the affidavit.

The Explorer was later found parked in front of her home.

At her residence, Bautista-Renteria came out and spoke to deputies. He said he was at the lake with his family and dropped off their jet-skis that night, the affidavit stated.

He said he was outside the business with his young child and a truck almost hit the boy. Bautista-Renteria told deputies he grabbed the child and took the child inside. He told police he didn't know when shots were fired and said he stayed inside with his child.

Investigators state in the affidavit that Bautista-Renteria told them he didn't shoot any gun. Bautista-Renteria's child told investigators that a truck almost hit him, and after that happened, the father he went back outside, according to the affidavit. The child told deputies that's when there were gunshots. Bautista-Renteria's child told deputies they have several guns in the house for protection.

Corina Bautista said she thought the shooting happened down the road, but investigators said her statements changed later on, the document said.

Several bullet casings were found at the crime scene. Investigators said it appeared as though a rifle was used to shoot at the driver's truck. When deputies wanted to speak with Bautista-Renteria, he asked for an attorney, according to the affidavit.

Corina Bautista went back and forth about whether or not the business had guns, but she ultimately admitted there were guns at the location, the document alleges. She told deputies the guns are not loaded.

While searching Bautista's Auto Sales, investigators found two AK-style rifles, loaded with magazines in a utility vehicle found in the back building.

Online jail records show that in addition to the murder charge, Bautista-Renteria now faces two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in connection with the shooting. He remains jailed on bonds totaling $2.8 million. Corina Bautista was released on a $25,000 bond on Friday.

The community is mourning the tragic death of Sanchez, who was a Tyler High School Class of 2022 graduate. In his time at Tyler High, he was a standout member of the baseball and football teams. In 2022, the Tyler Morning Telegraph selected him as the Best Preps Tyler Sportsmanship Award winner.

“Eli is what you look for in a team captain. He is one who takes care of all of his responsibilities,” his coach said at the time. “He is someone who looks after and looks to tech and help the younger players. With everything that he does outside of baseball, he always shows up in a positive mindset ready to work.”

Before his untimely death, Sanchez was working as a baseball coach at USA Prime East Texas.

“We lost a special person. Coach Eli passed away early this morning,” USA Prime East Texas said in a Facebook post on Friday. “Eli absolutely loved the ball field, he was more competitive than anyone you could ever meet. He loved our kids and was just a kid himself. The Prime Family is praying for all of his current players, his former players, and the Sanchez family.”

Affidavit: Friends were making U-turn when business owner shot Tyler teen to death (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Rubie Ullrich

Last Updated:

Views: 6434

Rating: 4.1 / 5 (52 voted)

Reviews: 83% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Rubie Ullrich

Birthday: 1998-02-02

Address: 743 Stoltenberg Center, Genovevaville, NJ 59925-3119

Phone: +2202978377583

Job: Administration Engineer

Hobby: Surfing, Sailing, Listening to music, Web surfing, Kitesurfing, Geocaching, Backpacking

Introduction: My name is Rubie Ullrich, I am a enthusiastic, perfect, tender, vivacious, talented, famous, delightful person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.