Grandmother Of Suspected Car Thief Shot, Killed: 'He Wasn’t A Vi - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Grandmother Of Suspected Car Thief Shot, Killed: 'He Wasn’t A Violent Person'

Posted: Updated:

SPOKANE, Wash – A day after her grandson, Brendon Kaluza-Graham, 25, was shot and killed by the owner of a car police say he was trying to steal, Ann Kaluza says he was a wonderful grandson, and not a violent person.

Tuesday, she sorted through pictures of her grandson when he was a little boy, telling KHQ "every time he called me he always said ‘I love you, Grandma.'"

Kaluza says she practically raised the boy, after he was born to 16-year-old parents.  The grandparents on both sides became very involved in raising him, and became very close.

Kaluza last saw her grandson Sunday night – the night before he was killed – when he came over for dinner and raked her pine needles.  She says it was his dream to own a landscaping business, and was trying to get his life back on track.

"Just Sunday I gave him two leads on landscaping jobs," she said, adding that she was going to take Kaluza-Graham and his little brother to get their drivers licenses – but never got the chance.

His license was revoked when he spent a year in jail on charges of vehicle theft, possessing drugs and assaulting a police officer.  He was just released in January, and was applying for jobs.  Before that, he'd been convicted four times for taking a vehicle without permission.

Kaluza admits her grandson made a few mistakes the last few years, but says he didn't deserve to die.

Police say Kaluza-Graham had just jumped into a running SUV and was driving away when the owner of the SUV fired one shot.  The medical examiner reported the shot hit him in the head, and ruled his death a homicide.

"To me, it was an execution, he was driving away and he was shot in the back of the head," she said. "It's one thing to have someone you love taken from you accidentally, but to be shot needlessly?  Our thought is, if he just wanted his car back, why didn't he shoot for the tire?"

Police have not identified the man who shot and killed Kaluza-Graham, and a sign on his front door Tuesday read:

"We appreciate your desire for information.  However, we have been advised not to speak to anyone about the incident at this time.  Once everything is settled, we will be more than happy to give the press a statement.  Thank you for your understanding."

Police say the man who pulled the trigger has been cooperative with their investigation, and he has not been charged with any crime.  The prosecutor will decide if charges should be filed, based on witness testimony and evidence recovered at the scene.

"I'd like it all undone, I'd like my grandson back," Kaluza said tearfully.  "I don't wish ill will on people, but this gun violence has to stop."

Tuesday, a memorial was set up at the scene where Kaluza-Graham died, and a number of people stopped by to sign it.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • INCREDIBLE drone video shows fire destruction over Pateros/Brewster

    INCREDIBLE drone video shows fire destruction over Pateros/Brewster

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 9:51 AM EDT2014-07-22 13:51:52 GMT
    KHQ.COM - Chelan HD Productions has given us permission to show this incredible video they shot with a drone surveying the damage done from the Carlton Complex Fire in the areas of Brewster and Pateros. This video is truly jaw dropping and really shows the level of destruction from the fire.>>
    KHQ.COM - Chelan HD Productions has given us permission to show this incredible video they shot with a drone surveying the damage done from the Carlton Complex Fire in the areas of Brewster and Pateros. This video is truly jaw dropping and really shows the level of destruction from the fire.>>
  • 10 Cheapest Houses For Sale In Spokane

    10 Cheapest Houses For Sale In Spokane

    Wednesday, November 27 2013 2:35 AM EST2013-11-27 07:35:08 GMT
    Whether you are in the market for an affordable place to live or are in the business of flipping houses, here are the 10 cheapest homes for sale in Spokane according to AllSpokaneHomes.com.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Whether you are in the market for an affordable place to live or are in the business of flipping houses, here are the 10 cheapest homes for sale in Spokane according to AllSpokaneHomes.com. Yes, they all need some work and some need a lot more than others, but when your mortgage payment is around the $200/month range there's at least something to stay positive about.>>
  • Dozens of buildings burned in Washington wildfire

    Dozens of buildings burned in Washington wildfire

    Friday, July 18 2014 6:08 PM EDT2014-07-18 22:08:11 GMT
    KHQ.COM - The wind-driven fire in north central Washington destroyed as many as 100 buildings - most of them homes - according to Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers. Rogers gave that update Friday morning in his update on the status of the Carlton Complex Fire burning around the communities of Pateros, Twisp and Brewster.>>
    KHQ.COM - The wind-driven fire in north central Washington destroyed as many as 100 buildings - most of them homes - according to Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers. Rogers gave that update Friday morning in his update on the status of the Carlton Complex Fire burning around the communities of Pateros, Twisp and Brewster.>>
  • Top Stories from KHQTop StoriesMore>>

  • Carlton Complex Fire now 250,136 acres; 2,500+ firefighters on scene

    Carlton Complex Fire now 250,136 acres; 2,500+ firefighters on scene

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:47 AM EDT2014-07-23 06:47:59 GMT
    UPDATE: The Carlton Complex is now the largest wild land fire ever to burn in the State of Washington. The perimeter of this fire is more than 100 miles long. The total acreage burned is 250,136 acres. >>
    UPDATE: The Carlton Complex is now the largest wild land fire ever to burn in the State of Washington. The perimeter of this fire is more than 100 miles long. The total acreage burned is 250,136 acres. A total of 2500+ firefighters and support personnel are assigned to the incident. The fire is 16% contained.>>
  • Watermelon Hill fire 80% contained

    Watermelon Hill fire 80% contained

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:46 AM EDT2014-07-23 06:46:48 GMT
    UPDATE: The Watermelon Hill fire remains 80% contained. Fish Trap resort evacuations have been lowered to advisory level according to the WA Department of Natural Resources. The fire has been reduced to 10,518 acres. This fire is burning 7 miles SW of Cheney, WA and started on July 19th. >>
    UPDATE: The Watermelon Hill fire remains 80% contained. Fish Trap resort evacuations have been lowered to advisory level according to the WA Department of Natural Resources. The fire has been reduced to 10,518 acres. This fire is burning 7 miles SW of Cheney, WA and started on July 19th. 
    >>
  • Thank you to all who gave to victims of Carlton Complex Fire!

    Thank you to all who gave to victims of Carlton Complex Fire!

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 5:26 PM EDT2014-07-22 21:26:11 GMT
    KHQ.COM - We were completely overwhelmed at how this community came together yesterday for the Q6 Cares, Inland NW Shares drive yesterday to support the victims of the Carlton Complex Fire who lost their homes. All day Monday from 5am - 6:30pm we were inundated by a constant flow of people wanting to make a difference.>>
    KHQ.COM - We were completely overwhelmed at how this community came together yesterday for the Q6 Cares, Inland NW Shares drive yesterday to support the victims of the Carlton Complex Fire who lost their homes. All day Monday from 5am - 6:30pm we were inundated by a constant flow of people wanting to make a difference.
    >>