Steven Richards, the accused involved in the hit-and-run that killed Mariel Garcia, visits her memorial.

Steven Richards, 26, visited a memorial site created for 18-year-old Mariel Garcia, days after being accused in her death. The Brampton man now faces new charges relating to cocaine trafficking.

A Brampton man already accused in the hit-and-run death of a teen while she was walking home last month is facing new charges after a drug sting in which nearly 50 kilograms of cocaine worth $2.4 million was found in a vehicle.

The re-arrest of Steven Richards, 26, came Monday (Dec. 14) following a joint investigation by Peel Regional Police’s Major Drugs and Vice Unit, Street Crime Gang Unit, and Intelligence Bureau.

Police say around 12:30 p.m., officers arrested a man in the area of Highway 401 and Highway 25 in Halton in relation to a criminal investigation and located approximately 48 kilograms of cocaine, with a street value of $2.4 million, within a vehicle.

Richards is charged with possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking. He is also charged with failing to comply with recognizance in relation to another criminal charge he is facing.

The Guardian has learned the accused is the same man who was charged last month in connection with the death of 18-year-old Mariel Garcia, who was hit by a vehicle while walking home around 10:45 p.m. on Nov. 21. The driver failed to stop or remain at the scene. But, a man turned himself in to police later in the evening.

Garcia, a first-year McMaster University student, was just two blocks from her Bonnie Braes Drive home when she was hit and critically injured, her brother, Aldrin, said. She was pronounced dead after being rushed to a Toronto trauma centre.

The teen met up with high school friends at Square One that night. She lived in Hamilton during the week as she studied Humanities at the university, but came home on weekends.

She graduated with honours from St. Joseph Secondary School in Mississauga. The family moved to Brampton from Mississauga two years ago.

Richards, in an apparent show of remorse, posted heartfelt messages on social media and visited the makeshift memorial created for Garcia near the crash site in the days following the incident.

Calling her a “little angel,” Richards posted on Facebook that he isn’t looking for forgiveness or pity, “I’m just trying to express my feelings and let everyone know how truly sorry I am.”

A Facebook page that friends say Richards created expresses his condolences and includes a poem called “Heaven’s Little Angel.”

The Guardian has been unable to verify with certainty that this is Richards’ Facebook page or that he created it. However, friends who created a public Facebook group say Richards created the page and photographed the accused visiting the memorial site and placing candles.

Source: The Brampton Guardian