Three jailed for life for Thusha shooting

Thusha Kamaleswaran, now six, was left paralysed after being shot last year
Thusha Kamaleswaran, now six, was left paralysed after being shot last year Photo:

Three men have been jailed for life for a gang-related shooting that left five-year-old Thusha Kamaleswaran paralysed.

Nathaniel Grant, Anthony McCalla and Kazeem Kolawole were hunting down a rival gang member when they shot Thusha at her aunt's south London shop in March last year.

They were found guilty last month of causing grievous bodily harm with intent to Thusha and shopper Roshan Selvakumar, who was shot in the face, as well as attempted murder of their intended victim Roshaun Bryan.

Grant will serve a minimum of 17 years, and Kolawole and McCalla at least 14 years.

Kolawole, 19, of Kennington, south east London; McCalla, 20, of Streatham, south London; and Grant, 21, of Camberwell, south east London, were told their crimes were "of the utmost gravity".

Judge Stephens said the convictions would not have been possible without CCTV, and that he hoped Thusha could go on to lead as full a life as possible.

Much of what you did was captured on CCTV and has been shown on television screens across the land.

One can only imagine the effect on the public when they saw what you had done.

(The three of you had gone out with a) determined, premeditated intention to kill (that day).

Mr Selvakumar was hit in the head but miraculously survived with a piece of bullet remaining in his head.

Five-year-old Thusha, who was dancing around with her family in the shop, was hit in the body.

Only the skill and devotion of the medical teams who became involved saved her life but she remains paralysed below her chest and this condition is permanent.

This simple but devastating statement of the essential facts of the case illustrate the gravity of these offences, riddled as they are with aggravating factors.

– Judge Martin Stephens QC
Thusha Kamaleswaran
Thusha Kamaleswaran Credit: ITV News

The trio cycled up to Stockwell Food and Wine on March 29 last year and Grant opened fire into the shop, hitting Mr Selvakumar and Thusha.

Jurors were told he would have been able to see the girl as he fired his second shot.

The three men were members of the Brixton-based OC (Organised Criminals) gang, and were on the hunt for a member of their bitter rivals ABM (All Bout Money).

Thusha was hit in the chest and the bullet passed through the seventh vertebra of her spine.

She went into cardiac arrest twice and had to undergo emergency surgery in the shop and at hospital, and is now permanently paralysed.

Mr Selvakumar has bullet fragments lodged in his head that cannot safely be removed.

Her family has been left battling debt and mother Sharmila Kamaleswaran is said to have suffered insomnia and depression.

She said in a victim impact statement that seeing her daughter, who dreamed of being a dancer, in a hospital bed "took my heart away".

Sejal Karia reports on the life sentences handed out to three men for the shooting of Thusha Kamaleswaran.