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Latest Norfolk homicide victims killed in domestic incidents

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Posted at 2:13 PM, Aug 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-25 17:45:50-04

NORFOLK, Va. - In the span of less than 24 hours, two people lost their lives in domestic-related shootings in the city.

The latest happened Tuesday afternoon when police say 29-year-old Jamiele Pender shot and killed his grandfather, Michael Sturdivant, on 42nd Street. Pender is now charged with second-degree murder.

"It's really depressing because you wouldn't think it'd be so close to home," said Tiara Young, a neighbor, who heard two gunshots. "[Sturdivant] was a really sweet guy. Spiritual, friendly - just a really nice neighbor. He really made me feel welcome."

In another incident Monday night, police say Amira James-Rodgers was shot and killed in a domestic incident on Kingsway Road. So far, they haven't released additional details about the shooting.

As News 3 has reported for months, Norfolk has seen an uptick in shootings over the summer. Chief Larry Boone spoke before city council on Tuesday afternoon right around the same time of the 42nd Street shooting.

Boone said there's a trend between stolen cars in the city and shootings. He cited a shooting from July when someone in a stolen car opened fire on 34th Street while neighbors were outside playing cornhole. News 3 spoke to one of the neighbors at the time.

"Those who live in other cities are coming here to create havoc," he said.

Boone asked the city council to allow officers to be able to pursue stolen cars. The pursuit policy only allowed chases to happen when a violent felony was being committed or a DUI. City council gave him preliminary approval.

"They think they can come here and create havoc, and I can tell you that's starting to be the narrative. We have to calibrate that narrative because we've done it before," he said.

Boone says there are several other measures in place to address gun violence. While the latest two homicides were classified as domestic, gun violence has been a problem across Hampton Roads this summer.

Related: News 3 takes a deeper look at gun violence in Hampton Roads

On 42nd Street, neighbors are remembering Norfolk's latest victim.

"He played music for the whole street," said Young. "Everyone just enjoyed it. He cut grass - just a really nice neighbor."