SPOKANE, Wash – Now that the police investigation is over, the 911 call Gail Gerlach made the morning his Suburban was stolen out of his Spokane driveway has been released.
The call lasts about 7 minutes, and was made after the car had been stolen, and after Gerlach fired a single shot. That shot ended up hitting and killing Brendan Kaluza-Graham.
But the 911 tapes show, Gerlach didn't know the shot he fired was deadly.
"I took a shot at the guy," Gerlach told the 911 call taker, and when asked if the man was hit Gerlach said he didn't know. "I don't know where he went, I don't know if he's still going or what."
Earlier on the tape, Gerlach tells 911 he'd left the car warming up in his driveway, when a man tried to steal it. Gerlach says he yelled, "Stop!" at the man, but he didn't. That's when Gerlach fired one shot from his concealed weapon, a 9mm pistol.
Washington law says that in order to use deadly force, you have to feel your own life is at risk. The police report shows Gerlach thought Kaluza-Graham had a gun and was pointing it at him.
"He leaned back, he pointed at me, I don't know what he pointed, but he scared the s*** out of me," Gerlach told 911 on the recording.
Also on the tape, Gerlach reported that he usually carries his gun and was on the phone with 911 when he set his pistol down in the kitchen and unloaded it, while his wife walked toward the scene of the crash.
"My windows are tinted, I could see him but I could not see detail," Gerlach reported.
He stayed on the line until police arrived.
Gerlach will be booked and released on June 12th, for his first court appearance on one count of 1st degree manslaughter.
Gerlach's lawyer has told KHQ Gerlach maintains his innocence, and plans to plead not guilty.