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'They were good people' | Friends, neighbors of 5 women shot in Norfolk talk

Balloons, candles, and signs lined a fence on Whitaker Lane in Young Terrace as people remembered three women who died and two who were hurt in a shooting there.

NORFOLK, Va. — One by one, people around the Norfolk neighborhood of Young Terrace placed a purple balloon or candle near Whitaker Lane. 

Each represents victims of domestic violence, including those who were shot Wednesday. 

Many of the people placing the items knew the victims of Wednesday's shooting personally. 

13News Now spoke to one woman tying balloons to the fence who says her granddaughter is related to two of the women involved.

"We came out here to support everybody," said the woman who wished to not be identified. "They were good people....good people."

Police say it started when a 19-year-old woman was shot. When her mother, along with three other women tried to help, that’s when police say the gunman shot them as well. 

RELATED: Man facing murder, other charges after 5 women shot in Young Terrace in Norfolk

The shooting took the lives of Detra Brown, a 42-year-old from Suffolk, Nicole Lovewine, a 45-year-old Norfolk resident, and Sara Costine, a 44-year-old woman from Lithonia, Georgia. They all passed away at the scene.

The two women who were hospitalized are 39 and 19 years old. Thursday morning, a spokesperson said they were expected to survive.

After a short search, police eventually arrested 19-year-old Ziontay Palmer on several charges. 

Norfolk Police Chief Larry Boone called the suspect a "coward" and said he has never seen a murder scene like this one in his years with law enforcement.

RELATED: Norfolk Police Chief Larry Boone calls for change after 5 women are shot

Meanwhile, the woman who knew Lovewine and her daughter says she wished more people protected these women.

"Everybody had loving hearts. My granddaughter is taking it really hard. Everybody should have come out and helped."

One neighbor, Cheryl Thorpe, says she ran out when she heard about the scene and couldn't believe her eyes.

"I never in my life have seen anything like that," said Thorpe. "For your momma to come help you, then she gets murdered and then a neighbor come help...and she dead as well...what else is there? Everybody's gone."

Young kids in the neighborhood told 13News Now they were right on the other side of the fence and say they saw everything happen so close to them. 

In addition to three counts of Second-degree Murder, Palmer faces a charge of Malicious Wounding and four counts of the Use of a Firearm in Commission of a Felony.

Palmer's preliminary hearing is scheduled to take place at 11 a.m. on Jan. 11, 2022.

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