Eastie Man Charged in Hit-and-run Death

August 31, 2011
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An East Boston man has been ordered held on $25,000 cash bail in Chelsea District Court this week after allegedly running over and killing a 22-year-old woman just over the line on Lee Burbank Highway in Revere.

Jon Ravida, 47, of 1150 Bennington St. in Eastie, was charged by Revere Police with motor vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of a fatal accident.

Ravida’s green Ford Explorer allegedly struck and killed Sothany Pen, 22, of Revere, around 5:50 a.m. on Monday. He was allegedly traveling northbound on Lee Burbank Highway and hit Pen on the exit ramp/turnaround at Winthrop Parkway.

After hitting her, police said he fled the scene as the woman lay critically injured on the highway. She had been crossing the road in order to return home after finishing her night-shift job at the Target Store in Suffolk Downs.

Ravida also allegedly did not contact authorities or call 9-1-1, and he even ignored a witness that allegedly tried to flag him down. Investigators indicated that Ravida allegedly tried to cover up his involvement after the accident.

“The evidence suggests that this driver didn’t just strike and kill a young woman, but also fled the scene and tried to cover up his responsibility,” Suffolk County District Attorney Dan Conley said. “These are extremely serious charges.”

Prosecutors told the court on Tuesday that a witness was present at a gas station in which Ravida made a purchase shortly before the collision. That witness left the gas station a short time after Ravida, who was driving a green Ford Explorer, and soon found himself in traffic with the defendant.

Prosecutors said the witness recounted Ravida cutting across multiple lanes of traffic and then colliding with something in the area of 335 Lee Burbank Highway. The witness stopped and saw a young woman lying unresponsive in the road. Ravida, meanwhile, used the nearby turnaround and began heading south. The witness tried to flag him down to no avail.

The witness called 9-1-1 and the victim was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital but her injuries were massive and fatal.

Using the witness’ description of the suspect vehicle and its driver, as well as other evidence developed throughout the morning and afternoon, Revere Police and State Police homicide detectives assigned to Conley’s office were led to Ravida’s Bennington Street home.

In an interview with investigators, Ravida allegedly made statements indicating that he had been on Route 1A that morning and had hit something but did not know what. Ravida allegedly stated that he returned home, peeled some stickers from the truck’s rear window, and parked it in the parking garage space furthest from his residence. Additionally, he allegedly obtained some tools to pound out dents to the vehicle’s front end. Ravida was taken into custody following that interview.

Later yesterday evening, investigators executed a search warrant on the garage and vehicle. When they opened the garage door, prosecutors said, they were met by the strong odor of bleach, as if it had been used on the vehicle in the very recent past.

Ravida will return to Chelsea District Court on Sept. 23rd.

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