Family relieved to see suspect charged after KC man killed trying to stop robbery

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The family of a deadly shooting victim, who was trying to stop a theft in progress, are relieved the suspected gunman is now in custody.

Thursday was a bittersweet day for 33-year-old Michael Brown’s loved ones.

“It breaks my heart,” his mother Jerri Noble said.

Jackson County prosecutors charged 19-year-old Thorne McKendrick with second-degree murder, two counts of armed criminal action and unlawful use of a weapon in connection to Brown’s death.

“From what the police said, there were 3-4 houses of video, so they were able to follow Thorne’s movement almost from a mile from coming to where he shot Mike and another mile leaving,” Noble explained.

Michael Brown, right, and his son

According to court documents, on the night of Aug. 1, surveillance video showed McKendrick inside a car that wasn’t his near 12th and Lawndale.

Brown, who he had been helping relatives with electrical work at a home where the car was parked, went outside to confront McKendrick.  

The two got into a bit of a scuffle during which court documents say McKendrick shot Brown in the head.

“I wished he wouldn’t have taken my son’s life,” Noble said, fighting back tears. “He has kids and a lot of family that loved him.”

“We’re trying to get through it, and it’s hard,” said Jacklyn Calvert, Brown’s ex-wife.

Calvert and Brown have an 11-year-old son together. She said he’s having a hard time coping with the loss of his father.

“After the funeral he said, ‘What happens next? We just all keep living without dad, and we just have to remember him?’” she recalled. “Yep, that’s what we do buddy.”

Calvert said Brown was not just an amazing father to their son, but also to her three other children.

“He was our rock,” she said. “This world is terrifying to me without him here. He took something precious.”

Brown’s family said they’re thankful McKendrick is off the streets, but it will never bring back their loved one.

“I hope he gets what he deserves, time in prison and maybe he’ll grow up and realize what he’s done,” Brown’s mother said.

Thorne McKendrick

The victim’s father identified McKendrick as the person who shot his son the night it happened. He saw security video of it.

While the wait has been frustrating, the family is hopeful for a conviction after detectives told them they now have a “rock-solid case.”

Court documents say a witness at the home where the shooting happened was also able to positively identify McKendrick in a lineup. He’s being held on a $250,000 cash bond and is due in court on Aug. 27.

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