Loved ones mourn loss of man in Richmond’s first confirmed homicide of 2022

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — As the Richmond Police Department (RPD) investigates the city’s first homicide of 2022, those who said they knew the man who was killed are left in mourning.

Friday at approximately 1:18 p.m., officers were called to the 2200 block of West Grace Street, between Strawberry and North Allison streets, for the report of a person shot. Officers reportedly arrived and found an adult male down and unresponsive from an apparent gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Authorities could be seen at the multi-family home at 2219 W. Grace for several hours on Friday.

Although police have not confirmed the identity of the man who was killed, loved ones rushed to his home after they heard the news.

“He loved God, he loved people and he loved music,” Michelle Penn said.

Penn told 8News that the victim of Friday’s shooting was a churchgoing man who made a tremendous impact on the lives of those around him. At this time, 8News is not releasing the name of the man who loved ones said was killed. Authorities said that confirmation of the victim’s identity will have to come from the Medical Examiner, who will determine the official cause and manner of death.

“As I got to know him, [I] grew to love him, and he called me, ‘Mom,’ and I called him, ‘son,’” Penn said. “It’s not so much of the big things that people do for you. It’s the little things, and that’s what I’m going to miss.”

Penn said that she first got to know the victim of Friday’s shooting through her daughter, who sang with him.

“He’s going to be greatly missed, and I know that his demise is going to and has affected thousands, thousands,” she said. “I don’t know how we going to get through it, but I know God is going to get us through it.”

Penn told 8News that many of the young adults who sang with the man who was killed were planning to get together over the weekend to mourn his loss through their common love of music.

“People take lives and they don’t think about the affect that it has on everyone connected to that person, and just your one moment in time of anger took away so much,” Penn said.

RPD said Friday afternoon that an adult male had been detained in relation to this shooting incident, and that authorities are not currently looking for any other suspects.

Public records show that one man was booked in the City of Richmond Friday afternoon with charges that match the description of what authorities said happened on W. Grace St. That individual has been charged with voluntary manslaughter, shooting/stabbing in the commission of a felony, second-degree murder, and the use of a firearm in a felony (first offense). However, RPD has not confirmed the identity of the suspect.

Friday’s shooting was also the city’s first homicide of 2022.

“It’s not just this murder,” Penn said. “We have had so many senseless murders, not just in the City of Richmond, but just throughout the United States of America and countries worldwide.”

By this time last year, Richmond had also had one homicide. On Jan. 13, 2021, Jamoine Tyler, in his 30s, was shot and killed in Whitcomb Court. As 2021 went on, the city would see more homicides than it had seen in 15 years.

“We expect the good from people until they show us otherwise,” Penn said. “But sometimes, in a bit of anger, in just that one time of you having a dispute, to go out of control so many wrong ways, and end up like this, and that’s the real tragedy.”

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