December 1, 2022
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‘Everybody here is devastated,’ neighbor says as man gets fatally shot in Upper West Side

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Ronald Thomas, 27, of Glen Allen, Va., got into an “intense” quarrel with a woman on W. 102 St. near Amsterdam Ave., witnesses said.

“I saw an argument,” said neighbor Manny El Grande. “I just said maybe that’s like a relationship, things going on… it wasn’t my problem so I kept walking.”

The argument escalated when a gunman pulled up to the cul-de-sac outside the Frederick Douglass Houses about 12:15 p.m., cops and witnesses said.

The shooter pulled out a gun and fired off shots, striking Thomas in the head, police said.

He then took off — leaving the mortally wounded victim inside the Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 he was sitting in.

A neighbor who heard the gunfire peeked out her window and spotted Thomas’s lifeless body, his white sneakers dangling out the driver’s side of the car.

“I don’t even come outside here anymore,” said alarmed resident Maria Beltran. “I just want to get the hell out of here. I’m going to the store right now and then I’m gonna go straight home.”

A woman sobbed at the gruesome scene as cops investigated the cold-blooded attack.

Thomas, who is originally from the Bronx, was up north for a visit, his stunned cousin said.

“It’s a tragedy,” said Dwayne Martin. “This is nuts because it’s unexpected. I don’t know who he came to see, what happened. He’s not that type of guy.”

Sunday afternoon’s shooting is not the first time violent tragedy has stuck his family — another cousin was recently shot in the area and survived the bullet.

“You don’t really know what’s going on out here or what people are into,” Martin said of the neighborhood. “I don’t know what’s going on over here, I don’t know if it’s gangs or what.”

When Thomas’ family was notified of the slaying, his brother in Virginia went into cardiac arrest, according to the president of the Frederick Douglas Houses, Carmen Quinones.

“The oldest brother found out, now he’s in the hospital with cardiac arrest,” said Quinones, who has been in contact with the family. “The mother’s with him. So the older son is already in the hospital behind this.”

Thomas’ brother is in critical condition, Quinones said.

“Everybody here is devastated,” Quinones continued. “We don’t know him, but still we’re devastated because this is someone’s child.”

The gunman has not been caught.

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