A federal judge’s son was shot and killed and her husband was wounded at their home over the weekend, multiple outlets report.
The FBI is investigating a shooting that occurred at the home of Judge Ester Salas in North Brunswick Township, New Jersey, on Sunday. Authorities are asking for information as they search for the gunman, who they think acted alone.
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According to the Associated Press, Salas’s son, Daniel, 20, was killed in the altercation and her husband, Mark Anderl, was injured, now recovering from surgery. The outlet reported that Salas was in the basement when the gunman came to the door.
The suspect, according to CNN, wore a FedEx driver’s uniform during the attack, though investigators are unsure whether he is an actual employee or disguising himself as a delivery worker. “We are aware of the media reports and are fully cooperating with investigating authorities,” a FedEx spokesman told CNN in a statement.
“Judge Salas and her family are in our thoughts at this time as they cope with this senseless act,” tweeted New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy.
CNN also reported that the motive is currently unknown, as authorities did not know of any threats made against the judge. The outlet noted that Salas (who was nominated to the U.S. District Court for New Jersey in 2010 by then President Barack Obama) has worked on a number of major cases — including Real Housewives of New Jersey stars Teresa and Joe Giudice’s 2014 financial fraud case.
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Anderl & Oakley
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Mayor of North Brunswick, Mac Womack reacted to the fatal shooting on Twitter, writing: “No words can express the sadness and loss we share tonight as a community after senseless shootings of the husband and son of USDC Judge Esther Salas. We commit to do all we can to support the family in this time, as well as all law enforcement agencies involved.”
U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey wrote on Twitter that he hopes the suspect is caught and brought to justice for the “horrendous act.”
“I know Judge Salas and her husband well, and was proud to recommend her to President Obama for nomination to NJ’s federal bench,” he wrote. “My prayers are with Judge Salas and her family, and that those responsible for this horrendous act are swiftly apprehended and brought to justice.”
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One of Salas’ neighbors, Marion Costanza, said the confrontation happened at about 5 p.m., according to The New York Times. Costanza spoke highly of the family, mentioning that Salas has previously expressed worries about being in danger because of her job.
“She had some high-profile cases, and she was always a little concerned,” she said, adding of the family, “There’s no one like them. They’re extremely good-natured. They would do anything for anyone.”
Anyone with relevant information on the case should call FBI Newark at 1-973-792-3000.