A video being circulated on social media shows a local news reporter's heartbreaking emotional reaction to the fatal shooting of a fellow television journalist in Orange County, Florida.
A man suspected of killing a woman on Feb. 22 returned to the scene hours later and shot four other people — killing a young girl and the TV journalist, according to the Orange County sheriff.
In a video shared on both NBC affiliate WESH's website and social media by observers, anchor Luana Munoz paused to wipe away her tears during a live report, saying it was a "really difficult" story to cover.
She added she wasn't going to turn the camera to show people who knew the victims who had gathered at the scene.
"But I will say this, it is nice to see all the media, we come together in solidarity in this moment," she said. "This is every reporter's absolutely worst nightmare. We go home at night afraid that something like this will occur. And that is what happened here."
Later, Munoz told TODAY.com she'd gone on air just moments after she and a news director from another TV station had been comforting a woman close to one of the victims as she cried outside the hospital.
"So in that moment, I was kind of wrapped up in in her emotion listening to her tears," Munoz said. "It was so fresh, it was so raw and then they asked me to stand in front of the camera and ... you know, you're human, I'm human. And it was difficult."
According to Sheriff John Mina, the crew from Spectrum News 13 was in Pine Hills, a suburb just outside of Orlando, on Wednesday afternoon to cover the slaying of a woman in her 20s who had been found shot in the area earlier in the day.
Mina said the suspect from the earlier shooting, Keith Melvin Moses, 19, returned to the scene and fired at the reporter and photographer. One of the two later died. Neither has been publicly identified by police or their employer.
Mina said the suspect then went into a nearby home and shot a mother and her young daughter. The 9-year-old girl died from her injuries.
Both the mother and the surviving TV news journalist were in critical condition as of Wednesday evening, officials said.
Mina said that it was unclear if the suspect knew the TV crew was part of the media.
“As far as we know (Moses) had no connection to the reporters and no connection to the mother and the 9-year-old,” Mina said. “We don’t know why he entered that home.”
Speaking to TODAY.com, Munoz said she hopes people who see her emotional reaction in the video realize that reporters are "human beings, too."
"People have this notion that journalists are stoic, that we show up to a scene of a crime just to be nosy or to do some some kind of damage or harm when that couldn't be further from the truth," she said. "Journalists are doing what they're doing because they're there to give information to the public."
"I have to go home with the raw thought of that young woman screaming at the top of her lungs. After losing someone who was so close to her. We take all of that home with us every single night," she said, emotional. "And I hope people will watch that and say, 'You know, wait a minute. They're they're human too. And they do care.'"
It is rare for domestic American journalists to be killed while out in the field. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, which tracks reporter deaths, the most recent incident was in 2015, when news reporter Alison Parker and photojournalist Adam Ward were killed while on assignment in Moneta, Virginia.
However, more American journalists have been killed in the United States in their offices or at home since the Virginia shooting, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists and previous NBC News reporting.
In 2018, a man opened fire man with a shotgun inside an Annapolis, Maryland, newsroom, killing five people in what police called a “targeted attack.” The five killed were all employees of the Capital Gazette newspaper.
Another reporter, Jeff German of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, was found stabbed to death outside his home on Sept. 3, 2022. He had covered government corruption as his beat. Police charged Clark County Public Administrator Robert Telles with German's murder. Telles is slated to go to trial on April 17, the Review-Journal reported.
In total, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 16 journalists have died in incidents related to their work in the United States since the group started keeping track in 1992.
Speaking to TODAY.com on Wednesday night, Munoz was sure to say that she knows the two deceased victims, their families, coworkers and friends are the "true victims" of the Feb. 22 tragedy.
"My thoughts and my prayers genuinely go out to all of our colleagues but mostly our colleagues at Spectrum 13 News," she said, before calling on society to "do better" when it comes to ending gun violence.
"We're just seeing too much of this violence is happening. And we, we need — we can — do better. We can do better as a society and we've ... got to figure out how we can be kinder to one another and how we can look out for each other better."