Robert Edward Kiesewetter was delivering pizza in the Edgefield Apartments area of Churchland when he was robbed. He was trying to get away when Jamal Minggia shot at him three times, according to Deputy Commonwealth's Attorney Douglas Ottinger.
Kiesewetter managed to drive to a nearby fire station, but the 50-year-old died of a gunshot wound to the chest in the April 25 shooting.
Minggia, 19, will spend the next four decades in prison for the murder and related crimes, a judge ruled Monday.
Kiesewetter worked three jobs and lived with his mother, Margaret Chipman, whom he helped support.
Chipman testified that she walks the floors at night, unable to sleep.
Defense attorney William Brown asked a detective to describe Minggia's demeanor at the time he confessed. Detective David Dempsey said that Minggia was crying and appeared to be sincere.
The prosecutor told the judge that Minggia could have been doing something productive. Instead, he said, he decided to take something that didn't belong to him.
"Mr. Kiesewetter was doing nothing but what he should have been doing, trying to make an honest living," Ottinger said.
Police identified Minggia as a member of the YNIC, a Hampton Roads gang affiliated with the Crips. But there was no evidence that linked the robbery and murder to gang activity, Commonwealth's Attorney Earle Mobley has said.
The defense attorney argued that Minggia had not planned the shooting and robbery. He said Minggia thought Kiesewetter was reaching for a gun when he shot him.
In September, Minggia pleaded guilty to murder, robbery and two counts of use of a firearm. As part of a plea agreement, Ottinger said the commonwealth's attorney had agreed not to ask for more than the maximum 44 years and five months under state sentencing guidelines.
About 15 to 20 family members and friends showed up in support of Minggia. Some waited outside the small courtroom while his mother and grandmother and a handful of relatives sat in chairs behind him.
Just before sentencing, the judge said it was a sad day for friends and family on both sides.
Asked if he had anything he wanted to say before sentencing, Minggia read an apology and asked for forgiveness. He talked of his two children, whom he said he loved.
When the judge handed down 40 years on the murder count, one of Minggia's relatives erupted into loud wailing and had to be escorted out of the courtroom by deputies.
A young woman was arrested by deputies and charged with disorderly conduct after she refused to leave and then screamed obscenities in the hall, according to Lt. Karin Johnson, a spokeswoman for the Sheriff's Office.
Deputies were ordered to make sure that all the people who had come in support of Minggia left the building.
Minggia received a total sentence of 63 years on all the charges, with 19 years suspended. He will serve indeterminate probation once released.
A co-defendant, Antonio J. Smith, who was 17 when arrested, will be tried Jan. 21.