NORFOLK, Va. — A former Atlanta news reporter was shot and killed Saturday morning when she was caught in the crossfire in downtown Norfolk, Virginia.
25-year-old Sierra M. Jenkins, of Norfolk, was a reporter for The Virginian-Pilot and Daily Press. She died at the hospital and was among five struck.
According to the newspaper, Jenkins earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Georgia State University in December 2019 and worked as an intern at Atlanta Magazine and CNN before joining The Pilot in December 2020.
With a hospital visitors badge still attached to his sweatshirt, Maurice Jenkins said he felt compelled to visit Granby Street on Saturday morning to see one of the last places his daughter Sierra Jenkins visited.
“For something like this to happen. There’s no bigger shock than that," Jenkins told 11Alive sister station 13News Now in Virginia.
“I got a call at 4 o'clock in the morning from her mother because she got a call from somebody. At that point, I was told she was shot and that’s all I knew. Of course, I rushed to the hospital to find out that she passed away.”
Sierra celebrated her 25th birthday this past week on March 13th. She was a beloved daughter, sister and journalist.
“She was a reporter for the Virginian Pilot," Jenkins said. "She started out as a breaking news reporter and not too long ago switched over to cover education.”
Sierra was out in downtown Norfolk on the 300 block of Granby Street when the shooting happened just before 2 a.m.
Two people, including Sierra, were rushed to the hospital. According to officers, two more people were shot but are expected to be okay.
Jenkins said Sierra was a bystander and was just hanging out with friends who were in town.
“They decided to go out and something bad happened," Jenkins said. "She was just a great all-around person. She was a great daughter, a great sister, a great friend.”
Jenkins said Sierra was bubbly, loved her family and had a lot of plans for the future.
“Had all kinds of life and opportunity ahead of her, but it was cut short because of senseless violence," Jenkins said.