RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The pain of losing a child is too much to bear for Andrea Richardson, whose son was shot and killed during a violent Fourth of July weekend in Central Virginia.
Early Monday morning, 23-year-old Timothy A.L.B. Richardson was in the front passenger seat of a moving vehicle when he was hit by gunfire. As of Wednesday Timothy’s family does not know if the incident was random or targeted, which is still under investigation.
Richardson was overcome with grief and emotion during Wednesday’s interview, Richardson. Sitting on the couch with her son’s grandmother, aunt and cousin, the mourning mother could not speak. Each time Richardson tried, tears streamed down her face, but she was able to muster up enough strength to express some of her anguish. She told 8News her son was playful, funny and good-hearted.
“I want my baby back,” Richardson said, sobbing as her family handed her tissues.
The Richardson family is even more heartbroken because Timothy was a new father. The 23-year-old leaves behind a 9-month-old daughter who will never know her father, only through pictures.
“We are still in just disbelief,” said Shaineen Richardson, Timothy’s aunt. “The reality hasn’t really sunk in yet. So many times you smiling because you’re thinking of a good memory and then it’s back to sad thinking he’s not here anymore.”
Family members also shared with 8News that Timothy went to Armstrong High School and then The Georgetown School in Hanover. He loved computers, math and was very artistic and creative.
“You can’t just read the book by its cover,” Shaineen said. “When you saw him he was big and you’d think oh he’s so intimidating, but he was soft as a baby.”
When asked how the past few days have been, the Richardson family says they’re leaning on each other during this time for support and trying to stay busy, but they are heartbroken.
Virginia State Police responded to I-64 west on the Shockoe Valley Bridge at 4:12 a.m. for reports of a shooting. The driver of a Kia Sedan told authorities they were shot at while moving west in the left lane. The driver was able to get off the interstate and stop on East Broad Street. 8News was told by sources that the stop was near the Marriott Hotel and Convention Center. The driver with Timothy was not hurt, however, Timothy died at the hospital.
The shooting required investigators to shut down all lanes of westbound I-64 in Richmond. State Troopers were seen on VDOT cameras recovering shell casings and canvassing the area for evidence on Monday. Virginia State Police are now looking for a possible vehicle of interest in the case.
Timothy’s death is one of several from gun violence over the holiday weekend. Timothy’s grandmother, Bertha Richardson, desperately saying it has to stop.
“We just taking one another away from each other. We act like we don’t even care,” said Bertha. “I thought we were supposed to celebrate our independence that day, not just go out and take somebody. I just wish we would just stop hurting and killing one another. This is ridiculous.”
The Richardson family, now ripped apart by gun violence, is asking anyone with information in this shooting to come forward to police.
United Communities Against Crime, friends and family will be holding a vigil for Timothy on Sunday at 2 p.m. at Jefferson Park.