Melbourne family's plea after 'beautiful' daughter killed in hit-and-run

The 19-year-old was a passenger in the car that crashed and she could not be revived.

·3-min read

The family of a 19-year-old who was killed in a hit-and-run on Sunday has pleaded with the driver of the car to come forward as they remember their "beautiful and courageous young girl".

Lara Guglielmi was a passenger in an allegedly stolen vehicle that crashed into a Mercedes-Benz in Thomastown, in Melbourne's north in the early hours of the morning. Paramedics tried to save her but she died at the scene.

Victoria Police believe the driver of the Kia Cerato — which was carrying two passengers — fled the scene before they arrived at Mahoneys Road with Ms Guglielmi's parents now asking they hand themselves in.

Lara Guglielmi with father Robert and (right) stepmother Nikki.
Lara's stepmother Nikki Guglielmi, right, said the teen's father (pictured) was her best friend. Source: 9News
Lara Guglielmi takes a selfie in a bathroom mirror wearing a blue dress.
Friends of Lara have taken to social media in shock over the news of her death. Source: Instagram/laraaguglielmi

"We’d really like the person who was driving the car to come forward and hand yourself in so that we can have some type of closure," the young woman's stepmother Nikki Guglielmi told the Herald Sun.

The grieving woman told 9News her stepdaughter was "a young, beautiful and courageous young girl". "She had the biggest heart, she loved everyone," she added, saying the crash has ripped their family apart.

Teen paid with her life for 'bad choice'

The heartbroken family said she "just made a bad choice to get in a car" which police believe was likely speeding before smashing into the Mercedes. The collision sent it spinning and the Kia hurtling into a fence.

"She was doing what young kids do, they make mistakes and next thing you know your life is over," her stepmother said.

Victoria Police said officers and ambulance crews commenced CPR on Ms Guglielmi but "she could not be revived". What's left of the Kia will reportedly be taken for further forensic examination.

A man and woman in the Mercedes SUV were also taken to hospital where they remain in stable condition. Meanwhile, another female passenger in the car with Ms Guglielmi was also taken to hospital with serious injuries. The driver of the car is yet to be found.

Smashed up white Kia Cerato in bushland near fence in Melbourne in which Lara Guglielmi was killed.
The Kia Cerato Ms Guglielmi was in was allegedly stolen with the driver fleeing the scene. Source: 9News

Social media tributes for Lara Guglielmi

Since her death, tributes for the 19-year-old have flowed on social media.

"I seriously can’t believe she’s gone I’m shattered," one of her friends wrote.

"I never imagined this day would come, I wish this never happened," said another. "Rest in peace my beautiful girl Lara Guglielmi our friendship was one I’ll cherish forever."

"Oh my god. Beautiful Lara. You had a heart of gold but where as strong as an ox," one woman wrote. "Rest in paradise, beautiful angel thoughts and condolences to all friends and family that lost such a little queen."

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