Police say Lynelle Jenkins was murdered and her body found inside her Johnson Avenue home in Norfolk.
Their suspect is her ex-boyfriend, 33-year-old Stephen Smith.
Family members say Jenkins was a victim of domestic violence, leaving Smith to get away from the beatings, but they say he still came back and beat her to death one last time the Sunday before Christmas.
“It’s sad because she was only 33. She has a 14-year-old girl and a 11-year-old boy. She loved them to death,” said Ashlee Jordan, Jenkins’ cousin.
Even worse is that her kids were the ones that found the body of their mother Sunday morning.
“It’s hard for them. It’s hard for younger kids losing their mom,” said Jordan.
The boy and girl aren't just dealing with the loss of their mother though, they are also dealing with the temporary loss of their possessions.
Their home is off-limits, still considered an active crime scene by Norfolk police.
“The kids need clothes, they have no clothes. Because of the crime scene, they cannot get into their house,” said Jordan.
It’s an expense the family never saw coming so they came to NewsChannel 3, asking us to take action.
We got results...with a little help from the Salvation Army.
“Our initial thought was, ‘Is this really happening? It’s Christmas time, and is this really the world we live in?’ It’s just a shame, these things know no season,” said Lt. Jacob Granados of the Salvation Army.
They quickly stepped up for this family in need bringing bags full of goodies for the murdered woman's children.
"There are jeans, shirts, hats, gloves and scarves,” said Jordan upon opening up the bags. ”It’s awesome, I can't wait to take this to the kids, they are going to be so happy!”
Just a bit of good news for a family in desperate need of it.