Detectives with the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department continue an investigation Sunday into the suspicious death.

SOMERS. (Ben Caxton)— Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department detectives continued an investigation Sunday into the suspicious death of a man who neighbors and close friends called “very friendly” and a generous gardener.

Authorities released very little information on the death that was reported around 8 p.m. Saturday in the 1300 block of Sheridan Road. Residents who contacted the Kenosha News said sheriff’s squad cars and detectives remained at the man’s home through the night and canvassed nearby homes during the investigation. A squad car was parked outside the man’s home Sunday afternoon.

KCSD Sgt. David Zoerner said the incident was a death investigation of a male adult.

Lei Lani Akina, a close friend of the man, however, identified him as Charlie Luitze, a man in his 70s, who she has known for the last five years. Akina found him dead in his room.

“I knew something was wrong. He wasn’t getting back to me and his car was there. I knocked, tried the handle and just went in. It was real dark. … I just got an eerie feeling,” she said.

She went to the man’s home initially, but didn’t venture any further toward his room and left and went back to her home nearby to grab a flashlight. A few minutes later she returned with her daughter who waited outside Luitze’s house.
“When I got to his room, he was there in his bed,” she said. She said there was “blood splattered everywhere.”
Distraught, she ran out of the home and asked neighbors to dial 911.

“He was a good guy. He helped everybody. He walked around the neighborhood and gave vegetables. He helped me for years. I could count on him. Whenever (I needed him) he was the first one there,” she said. “He’s just a nice guy. It’s so horrible.”


Luitze, was someone who was “very friendly, really easy to like, a Christian man,” she said.


Akina said the last time she saw and spoke with Luitze was about three or four days ago when he had come over to drop off a bounty of cucumbers and tomatoes.

She texted him afterward thanking him for the freshly grown produce. He never got back to her.

Akina believes that Luitze had gone to bed then that evening and he was killed.

“That was the last time I heard from him,” she said. “He was (very nice). He didn’t deserve this.”

According to Darryl Martin, who also lives in the neighborhood, Luitze was a generous man.

“He’s got a garden, and he’s given everyone here vegetables,” he said. “He was a good guy.

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