Report: Time Inc. Video Journalist Killed in Ukraine


A U.S. journalist has been killed covering the war in Ukraine.

Brent Renaud, a Peabody award-winning video journalist working for Time Inc., was killed in Irpin, outside Kyiv, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, which cited a Ukrainian police official and news reports.

Kyiv regional police chief Andriy Nebitov said in a Facebook post that Russian troops had fired on Renaud and a photographer as they were going through a checkpoint, killing Renaud and injuring  Juan Arredondo, described as a a Colombian-American photographer, but CPJ could not immediately confirm the details.

“We are shocked and saddened to learn of the death of U.S. journalist Brent Renaud in Ukraine. This kind of attack is totally unacceptable, and is a violation of international law,” said CPJ's Carlos Martinez de la Serna in a statement. “Russian forces in Ukraine must stop all violence against journalists and other civilians at once, and whoever killed Renaud should be held to account.”

Audrey Azoulay, the Director-General of UNESCO, condemned the killing. "Journalists have a critical role in providing information during a conflict, and should never be targeted,” said Azoulay. “I call on the respect of international humanitarian standards, to ensure that journalists and media workers are protected."

UNESCO said Renaud had also worked for HBO and NBC in the past.

Time Inc. editor in chief Edward Felsenthal said the company was "devastated" by Renaud's killing. "Brent tackled the toughest stories around the world often alongside his brother Craig Renaud," Felsenthal said. "In recent weeks, Brent was in the region working on a TIME Studios project focused on the global refugee crisis. Our hearts are with all of Brent’s loved ones. It is essential that journalists are able to safely cover this ongoing invasion and humanitarian crisis in Ukraine."

While Renaud was first identified as working the the New York Times, the paper issued a statement saying he had not contributed to the paper since 2015 and that the confusion was because he was wearing a Times press badge from several years ago. The paper also called him a talented filmmaker and said it was deeply saddened to hear of his death. 

"The Writers Guild of America East (WGAE) mourns the loss of filmmaker Brent Renaud, killed in Ukraine by Russian troops in what reportedly was a deliberate attack," the guild said in a statement. "The murder of Brent Renaud reminds us all of the mortal danger journalists place themselves in when covering war so the rest of the world can be aware of the horror and tragedy of combat, especially among the innocent. Further, it serves to illustrate the importance of a free and independent press, especially when Russia has made dissent and fair and open reporting on the fighting in Ukraine a crime punishable by prison.

"The WGAE, which includes many journalists among its members, sends it sympathy to Renaud’s family and joins the world in condemning his death, Russian censorship and the war that has so devastated the independent nation of Ukraine." ■

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.