Granddad shot and killed when apologizing for fender bender

Jonathan Mauk headed out on a quick run to get supplies to make beef jerky for his family. Looking for a spot to park his car in a busy Walmart lot, he accidentally backed into another vehicle, immediately stepping out to make amends with the other driver.

Hearing his apology with gunfire, the driver of the other car – that only had a minor scratch – shot the 59-year-old granddad in the face and fled, leaving Mauk bleeding out in the middle of the parking lot.

And now loved ones are dealing with the immeasurable loss of the “sweet” man whose death leaves the family “completely broken.”

A routine stop at a Highland, California Walmart turned tragic for 59-year-old grandfather Jonathan Mauk after a minor fender bender escalated into a deadly encounter.

On February 5, around 8 p.m., Mauk pulled into the busy parking lot of the store and started searching for an empty spot.

According to his eldest son Matthew, he was making a quick run to pick up curing salt and some soda to make his family beef jerky, using the dehydrator one of his three sons bought him this past Christmas.

Navigating the lot, Mauk – a car enthusiast – accidentally reversed his custom-built 1998 Chevrolet Camaro Supersport into a vehicle operated by suspect Shawntece Marie Norton, who was backing out of her parking spot.

“For whatever reason, the victim stopped and slowly backed his vehicle up and that’s when he had a collision with the suspect’s vehicle,” explained Capt. Nelson Carrington with the San Bernardino Police Department.

When the father and grandad stepped out of his car to apologize to Norton, police allege the suspect also stepped out and shot Mauk in the face before fleeing.

Speaking with People, Carrington explained “there was a verbal altercation, and that’s when, per witness accounts, the suspect retrieved a firearm and shot the victim.” He continues, “It’s my understanding that the suspect is the one who did all of the yelling.”

Police said the impact was minor, resulting in a scratch or two.

Lee Hall, the victim’s friend and co-worker at Casey’s Fine Automobiles, told KTLA: “I cried when I found out he got killed. That’s what he loved – cars. He probably would have fixed the lady’s car for nothing, but she ended up shooting him.”

Credit: Getty.

Mauk died at the scene and according to police, 37-year-old Shawntece Marie Norton, was found within 12 hours at an apartment complex nearby.

‘None of it makes sense’

“From what witnesses told me, my dad felt responsible. He was the one to blame, so he got out of the car to apologize, and that is when the other person shot him,” his eldest son, Matthew Mauk, told ABC 7.

Described as a solid foundation for his family, Mauk’s loss is deemed immeasurable by his eldest son, Matthew Mauk, who is grappling with the senseless tragedy.

“He’s been a solid foundation for all of us. The loss is immeasurable,” says the grieving son, emphasizing that none of it makes sense.

“I can’t even put into words why that happened or what would go through a person’s mind to make that seem like an acceptable action,” the son added said. “None of it makes sense.”

The next day, Matthew picked up his dad’s car and inspected the damage.

“There is a scratch on the fender. There is not a dent, there is no real damage. There is a scratch. That is the extent of the collision that he lost his life over,” his son said.

‘Truly selfless’

“The earliest memories with my dad are always car-related,” Matthew tells the Sacramento Bee.  “To every car that he built when I was little, to my first car we built when I was 18. We’ve always done car stuff together.” Matthew adds that if his “truly selfless” dad saw someone with the hood of their car up, he would offer help: “He knew no limit as to what he would do to help other people, and that’s just how he lived his entire life.”

Family friend Nicole Lyon offers evidence of his generosity with her post on Facebook.

Lyon writes, “I’ve known Jon since I was a little girl. Him and the Mauk family are my family, and my heart just breaks so bad for them. Jon did not deserve this at all. When I wrecked my Toyota him and Matt came to my rescue, they let me stay at their house…What a sad and unnecessary tragedy.”

Meanwhile, Matthew, who’s struggling to comprehend the inexplicable violence, says his family is broken without his dad. “(Norton) took away a person way before he was ready to leave this planet. He had a lot of love left to give. I’m looking at my family. It’s completely broken.”

Matthew fondly remembered, highlighting his particular love of being a grandfather to his 10-year-old grandson and 5-year-old granddaughter.

“There is no sacrifice he wouldn’t make for his family,” said Matthew, who then revealed that following the tragedy, the family found a letter written by his dad when he had fallen sick a “couple of years back.”

“He outlined a message to every single one of us. In the letter, he wanted his granddaughter to know that he loved her more than anything in the world. There’s a hole in our hearts that can never be filled,” said Matthew.

These sentiments are shared in a GoFundMe, that as of February 18, has raised almost $27,000 of its $15,000 goal.

Matthew writes, “My father was an amazing man, loved by everyone who had the pleasure of knowing him. He leaves behind three sons, two grandchildren, and a legacy that cannot be described.”

Seeking justice

Following the tragic loss of Jonathan Mauk, his family’s determination to be actively involved in the legal proceedings reflects a profound dedication to seeking justice.

“We’ll be there for every single court hearing – anything that has to do with this incident, we’re going to be there,” Mauk said. “We’re going to be vocal, we’re going to talk about it.”

Norton, who entered a not guilty plea during her initial court appearance, is charged with murder.

Our hearts and thoughts go to the Mauk family in their time of grieving. We also hope justice is served and the suspect is held accountable for her senseless act of violence against Jonathon Mauk.

What do you think of this story? Please share your thoughts and then share this story so we can spread a lot of love to the Mauk family!


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