‘Nobody deserved that’: Those who knew man killed in Richmond hit-and-run plead for justice


RICHMOND, Va (WRIC) – Friends and loved ones of a man killed in a hit-and-run accident last week are demanding justice for his death. Ronald Ponce was struck and killed on Berwyn Street, shortly after 9 p.m. on Friday night.

Ponce was from Guatemala and didn’t have any family in the area. He was with his girlfriend, Meagan Shell, the night he was killed.

A friend of Shell’s, Laurie Mainellis, told 8News they were in the house Friday night when the hit-and-run happened.

Mainellis said she saw his bloody hat in their yard, while his body was all the way down the street and his boots and phone were on separate sides of the road.

“I just don’t understand how it started from here and his body was all the way at the end,” she said.

She said Ponce was on the phone talking about getting a new car the very next day.

“From one second to the next they’re gone,” Mainellis said. “And I just can’t believe [it].”

Mainellis didn’t know Ponce for long, just the seven months he dated Shell, but says when they did speak he told her how much he cared about Shell and what she meant to him.

Shell is temporarily paralyzed from a previous accident.

Mainellis saw their relationship and said Ponce would pick shell up out of her wheelchair, carrying her to where she needed to go.

“She was giving up on herself and life and he just made her want to live life,” Mainellis said.

Mainellis hopes justice is served.

“Nobody deserved that. I don’t know how. This is a road that is not even 20 miles an hour. How can somebody? I can understand maybe injured but completely killed? I really feel like it had to be intentional. So, I just hope that they find whoever did it,” she told 8News Monday.

Mainellis said they’ve spoken to Ponce’s son over the phone in Guatemala who is in disbelief that his dad is gone and won’t be able to return to his country like he’d expected.

Richmond Police are continuing to investigate the hit-and-run.

This is a developing story. Stay with 8news for updates.

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