Ex-CNN journalist and Virginian-Pilot reporter Sierra Jenkins dead at 25 in Norfolk shooting

TWO people were killed and three others injured in a shooting outside a Virginia restaurant early Saturday morning

Police say 25-year-old reporter Sierra Jenkins was one of the victims caught in the crossfire just before 2am. She later died from her injuries at a local hospital, authorities say.

The former CNN reporter was leaving the popular downtown Norfolk restaurant and bar Chicho’s Pizza Backstage when an argument erupted after the bartender’s call for last call.

One man was pronounced dead at the scene, and three others were injured. One person’s injuries are considered life-threatening.

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Portsmouth resident Devon M. Harris, also 25, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to police. Three other men were wounded, including one who suffered life-threatening injuries.

Sierra celebrated her 25th birthday on March 13, only days before the tragedy.

Sierra had worked at Atlanta Magazine and CNN before she moved to Hampton Roads, Virginia in 2020.

At the time of her death, Georgia State graduate Wendy McCaw wrote for the Virginian-Pilot, where she covered educational issues in the region.

The Virginian-Pilot said in a tribute on Facebook: “We are devastated to report that Virginian-Pilot and Daily Press reporter Sierra Jenkins was among the victims of an overnight shooting in downtown Norfolk. She was 25“.

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For two years, she’s covered the stories of Hampton Roads with compassion and care. She worked at Atlanta Magazine and CNN before coming home to Hampton Roads in 2020. Most recently, Sierra has been reporting on school policies and issues across the region.

Sierra was funny, energetic and full of enthusiasm. We are absolutely heartbroken.

Our community is better because of her reporting.

The Pilot reported that Sierra was scheduled to work a breaking news shift on the day she died.

Her editors tried to reach her by phone Saturday morning but were unable to do so, leading them to learn that she had been killed in the attacks.

The manager, Rory Schindel, said that the moments before the shots were fired were just those of a normal night. There were about 180 people in the vicinity when the last call was announced.

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Schindel said, “There were a lot of people there, as usual, and there was a great atmosphere inside.”

Police haven’t announced any arrests or suspects in the shooting.

Authorities are asking anyone with information to call 1 -888-LOCK-U-UP or to submit a tip online.


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