While the bulk of the US got ready to bring in the New Year, a 16-year-old boy in New Jersey allegedly opened fire – shooting and killing three of his family members and a family friend.
The boy, who cannot be named, is currently in police custody after being arrested without incident on suspicion of the killings. He is expected to be found guilty and charged as an adult with four counts of murder.
In news that is tragically not unfamiliar in America, the suspected killer used a semi-automatic rifle which was legally owned and registered to a family member, claim police officials.
A statement released by Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office reads:
Long Branch police responded to a 911 call reporting shots fired at 635 Wall Street in the city at 11:43 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 31. 2017.
Long Branch police and Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office arrived on scene a minute later where they discovered four deceased victims: the suspect’s father, 44; mother, 42; sister, 18; and family acquaintance, 70.
A joint investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and Long Branch Police Department continues, but it appears the 16-year-old boy used a Century Arms semi-automatic rifle to kill his victims.
Fortunately, the suspect’s brother and grandfather were able to escape the house physically unharmed, however, of course, their lives have been deeply scarred by this horrific incident.
Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni added: ‘It’s a terribly tragic incident’.