DETROIT – A man fired four days earlier from his job as an accountant walked into his old office, passed by the receptionist and made his way to a manager's office with the purpose of killing him with a shotgun, a police sergeant said Wednesday during the man's arraignment.
When Monday's violence had concluded, the receptionist -- Madeline Kafoury -- was shot dead and two managers, Paul Riva and Alan Steinberg, were wounded.
Steinberg was shot in the hip and has spoken to police about the attack, while Riva had not yet regained consciousness and was on a ventilator.
A not guilty plea was entered on LaCalamita's behalf during Wednesday's hearing.
LaCalamita is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Kafoury, 63, of Warren. He also is charged with two counts of intent to murder in the shootings of Riva, 47, of Sterling Heights, and Steinberg, 48, of Macomb County's Bruce Township -- as well as three counts of possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony and one count of fleeing and eluding police.
LaCalamita was asked by Judge Michael A. Martone if he understood the charges against him and if he was aware that he could be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted of first-degree murder. He responded, "Yes," to the series of questions posed by Martone. The judge ordered him held without bond pending his next court hearing April 19.
Kafoury's loved ones attended Wednesday's arraignment, and her daughter, Charlene -- holding a picture of Kafoury -- sobbed loudly during the proceedings.
"She didn't do it. She didn't fire him," Charlene Kafoury said. LaCalamita sat nearby and did not react to the comments from the victim's daughter.
After the hearing, Charlene Kafoury and other loved ones gathered for a news conference.
"She wasn't just a receptionist. ... She was our mom and the grandmother of our children," said Charlie Kafoury, Charlene's brother.
"She was an essential point of our lives," said a tearful Charlie Kafoury, who had difficulty getting out his words. A number of loved ones stood behind him and cried audibly.
They engaged in a group hug after the news conference.
Troy police Sgt. Barry Whiteside said LaCalamita first stopped at the reception area after 10 a.m. on Monday and talked to Kafoury, then entered Steinberg's office and asked him twice if he wanted to be shot.
Steinberg told police he thought LaCalamita was holding a toy gun.
"He didn't think it was real until he saw the shotgun was being racked," Whiteside said.
After shooting Steinberg, Whiteside said LaCalamita walked down the hall and into Riva's office. Kafoury, who was standing in the doorway of Riva's office, was struck in her midsection, Whiteside said. She fell to the floor and died from her wounds, he said.
LaCalamita then fired one round at Riva, who was struck in the upper chest area. Riva tried to step over Kafoury and collapsed in the hall, Whiteside said.
Police said LaCalamita targeted the two managers and also may have intended to shoot another one.
"There is a suspicion that there might have been a third upper management official he was seeking," said Troy police Lt. Gerry Scherlinck.
The man, whom police did not identify, was not in the office suite at the time of the attack.
Police said the shotgun was armed with buckshot that contained nine pellets in each shot. Some of the pellets hit the victims and some did not, police said.
LaCalamita was fired from his position as a general accountant last Thursday because of poor performance, police said. According to receipts police recovered from his apartment, LaCalamita purchased the shotgun around 3:45 p.m. on Friday.
LaCalamita was denied a handgun permit in March, said Scherlinck, who would not say why the permit was denied.
LaCalamita was arrested Monday afternoon after leading police on a chase north along Interstate 75 in Genesee County in which speeds reached 120 mph. A 12-gauge pump-action shotgun and three live shells were found in the silver Ford Fusion LaCalamita was driving.
Police said they found a long, cardboard box consistent to one that would hold a shotgun, as well as empty shell boxes, in a Dumpster outside LaCalamita's apartment during a search Monday evening.