‘He didn’t deserve to die’: Family devastated, wants justice after man is stabbed to death in Richmond

Crime

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – The family of 54-year-old Robert Pulling spoke with 8News in an interview Monday after he was stabbed to death over the weekend on Melbourne Street.

Now, a man has been charged with first-degree murder, among other charges, following the stabbing.

Pulling’s daughter, sister and brother spoke with tears in their eyes, talking about how much they’ll miss him and how much they want justice for what happened to him Saturday night.

“He didn’t deserve to die,” Pulling’s daughter, Chelchasity Pulling, said Monday.

Family and neighbors tell 8News Robert Pulling was a hard-working, loving man. (Photo: Chelchasity Pulling)

Denise Harris, Robert Pulling’s sister, said she knew something was wrong when a family member called her and said they had news.

“I just was like frozen, I was numb, I couldn’t move, I was shaking. I just, I sat in my car for like 30 minutes crying,” she said.

His brother, Dennis Pulling, couldn’t believe the news, saying he was just speaking with his brother Robert hours before he was killed.

“I didn’t get no response back, I realized within two hours he was dead,” Pulling said.

In Ring camera video given to 8News by a neighbor who didn’t want to appear on camera Sunday, a swarm of police cars along Melbourne Street can be seen around the time of the stabbing near 9 p.m. Saturday night.

8News is told the details around the killing are gruesome, but we’re still working to confirm what actually happened inside the home on Melbourne Street.

Early Sunday morning, Richmond Police arrested Kevin Rice on failing to appear in court and on robbery in relation to the stabbing.

Harris doesn’t want Rice to see the light of day.

“In the extent of the way my brother was murdered, he does not need to get out,” Harris said.

Kevin Rice (Booking Photo: Richmond Police Department)

The family has a lot of questions for REAL LIFE, the organization that runs the halfway house the stabbing happened in.

“That halfway house is accountable for my brother’s murder,” Harris cried.

The family agrees with neighbors 8News spoke with over the weekend who said the house is unsupervised. “We deserve answers from them,” Harris told 8News.

Robert Pulling’s daughter, Chelchasity, wants to know how her dad was stabbed if REAL LIFE does not allow weapons inside their homes.

One neighbor we spoke with over the weekend, Kyle Schlue, was upset, telling 8News that the halfway house was opened seven months ago without their input.

“Clearly things just spiraled out of control and again, someone died,” Schlue said.

8News attempted to get answers, calling the people who run the business.

After calling the main phone line for the business and the number for the manager who is believed to run the house, we got no answers.

REAL LIFE’s director and founder, Sarah Scarbrough, sent a statement to 8News Sunday night, saying in part, “There was no indication that this may occur. Our continued thoughts and prayers are with the victim’s family.”

Kevin Rice has been charged with first degree murder, abduction and shooting or stabbing in the commission of a felony according to court records. He’s set to go before a grand jury in December.

Before being arrested Sunday, Rice was already charged with eluding police and several firearms charges that he will go to trial for in May 2022.

Robert Pulling’s family plans to take legal action against REAL LIFE.

Stay with 8News for updates.

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