Durham, N.C. — On Thursday night, WRAL News reporter Lora Lavigne and photojournalist Luke Notestine were at a stoplight when more than 10 shots rang out, just feet from their vehicles.
Lavigne and Notestine were in the 3000 block of Elm Street while covering a story.
“During our interview with a resident about gun violence in the community, we heard the first round of gunshots go off in the near distance,” recounted Lavigne.
That’s when Lavigne and Notestine grabbed their equipment and attempted to leave the area.
“Only to witness someone in a passing light-colored vehicle,” described Lavigne. “At least two suspects we saw were inside [the car], firing several shots into the neighborhood.”
The shooting happened just inches away from WRAL’s cars, according to Lavigne.
“We didn’t know which direction to turn,” she said.
“It’s unbelievable. [I’ve] never experienced anything like that before, and I pray never again,” added Lavigne.
The shooting happened about a block away from the Durham Police Department.
“The most heartbreaking part about this is that children were playing outside. Families and neighbors were gathered outside. It was such a sense of carelessness for people’s lives,” said Lavigne.
Lavigne said that a resident she had spoken to earlier in the day said Thursday’s shooting was the third drive-by shooting in the community in the past five days.
“We cover shootings here in Durham nearly every day, but to be standing in the thick of it while doing our jobs gives us a firsthand experience of what residents here in Durham feel every moment — fear, terror, hopelessness — because you never really know when you’re going to become the next victim.”
Durham police are also investigating an incident in the ear of Main and Elizabeth Streets.
Police said one person is in custody in relation to one of the shootings.
No one was injured in either shooting.