LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The man accused of hitting and killing a 22-year-old woman then fleeing the scene told police the sun was in his eyes and that he didn’t know what he had hit, according to an arrest report obtained by 8 News Now. Richard Modolo, 69, faces one count of felony duty to stop at the scene of an accident involving death.
Around 7:48 a.m. on April 10, Metro received a call about a male body lying on the south side of Charleston near Fort Apache in the west valley. The report describes the body as “beyond help, cold and not breathing.”
When detectives responded, they observed white, yellow, black and reflective plastics, usually used in front headlights, at the scene.
According to the report, the body was off the roadway and covered with sheets. The responding Clark County Coroner investigator said the victim was a Black female adult around 20-25-years-old. She was wearing a black jacket, red sweatpants, white tube top, purple, black and gray wig and black sandals.
Police then obtained surveillance video from area shops, including Chick-fil-A, Fabulous Freddy’s Car Wash, Jiffy Lube and Pottery Barn.
Police say on the Chick-fil-A video, a white pickup truck is seen driving through Fabulous Freddy’s parking lot. It turns left onto eastbound Charleston, traveling west.
Fabulous Freddy’s footage showed a white pickup driving through their parking lot before turning left onto eastbound Charleston. The truck is then observed turning into the Chili’s parking lot, before exiting and traveling east on Charleston. In this video, detectives saw there was a toolbox in the truck’s bed. It also had chrome rims and “appeared to be an older model Dodge quad cab truck.”
According to the report, Jiffy Lube surveillance footage showed a white Dodge pickup entering the shop’s parking lot from Fort Apache. The vehicle drove through Fabulous Freddy’s lot before turning left, traveling west on eastbound Charleston. While the truck’s license plate was visible in the footage, police say it was unreadable.
The final surveillance footage was obtained from the off-site company that handles Pottery Barn security. The point of contact told police he saw the collision occur. He recounted the pedestrian was walking across Charleston outside of a crosswalk. An unknown vehicle had stopped in the middle lane to allow the pedestrian to cross, while a white Dodge pickup truck in the right lane failed to stop, hitting the pedestrian with its front. He said the victim was thrown from the roadway, coming to rest on landscaping. The report says the contact helped detectives walk to the area of initial contact, where they laid out the crime scene.
A Metro detective attempting to locate the suspect vehicle found one with similar characteristics, including the toolbox, in the parking lot of Palms at Peccole Ranch Apartments. When another Metro detective arrived, they observed it had damage that is typical for pedestrian collisions. They also found black and red fabric fibers, as well as biological material.
The report says records revealed the owner to be Richard Modolo, who lived in the complex. When they knocked on his door, he answered with a towel wrapped around his waist. He allowed detectives in and went and got dressed in jeans and no shirt. During a recorded conversation about the incident, Modolo reportedly told detectives he was driving down Charleston to get food, but couldn’t see, as the sun was in his eyes. He says he knew he’d hit something, but that he didn’t know what it was.
According to the report, Modolo circled back around to try and see, but when he couldn’t tell what it was, he drove home.
After the suspect told police he was the vehicle’s sole owner and operator, he put a shirt on and went down with detectives to take a closer look. While they searched the truck, Modolo smoked a cigarette. They proceeded to tell him they were going to arrest him once he finished it and that he would be taken to the Clark County Detention Center for “fleeing the scene of an accident.”
Modolo appeared in court Sunday, and a judge released and placed him on high-level electronic monitoring.