Man charged with felony in fatal Southside hit and run

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RICHMOND, Va. -- Police have charged a man in relation to the fatal hit and run that occurred Saturday afternoon in Richmond's Southside.

Sixty-five-year-old John B. Spence was charged with felony hit and run after he struck and killed a man with his Audi TT convertible at the intersection of Semmes Avenue and Cowardin Avenue and continued on without stopping.

Police located Spence's vehicle at his home on the 2800 block of East Leigh Street and arrested him in connection with the incident.

John B. Spence

John B. Spence

Investigators are consulting with the Commonwealth Attorney's Office and more charges are expected to be filed.

The incident occurred on the 1900 block of Semmes Avenue at approximately 12:30 p.m. when 55-year-old Christopher A. Griffin was attempting to cross Semmes Avenue southbound near the intersection.

A family of four, including two small children were one of the first to arrive and see Griffin lying in the street. Anthony Allen said, “I had my kids in the car and they stayed in the car, but they were kind of a traumatized.”

Allen said his wife tried to speak to Griffin, but he was only able to moan.  “He was responsive, he moaned a little bit but he was breathing, barely. Right when the first responders got there he stopped breathing and he became unresponsive,” Allen said.

Griffin suffered from head trauma, according to witnesses.

Allen watched as first responders did CPR on Griffin for 15 minutes, but their efforts were unsuccessful. “Hopefully justice is served,” Allen said. “That’s somebody’s father, brother, or son.”

Police are asking anyone with information about this investigation to either call Richmond Police Dept. Crash Team Officer Roderick Rose at (804) 646-1643 or contact Crime Stoppers at 780-1000.

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