Three Jews Among Dead in Shootout at Kosher Supermarket in New Jersey
At least six people were killed in a shootout at a kosher food store in Jersey City, New Jersey, on Tuesday afternoon, officials and local media said.
Five people — three members of the local Jewish community and two suspected assailants — were pronounced dead inside the JC Kosher Supermarket on Martin Luther King Drive and a police detective also died in an exchange of gunfire in which hundreds of rounds were fired.
Jersey City Police Chief Michael Kelly said he believed the dead were all struck by gunfire from the suspects, who arrived at the scene in U-Haul truck and held police at bay around the store for hours in a deadly standoff.
“Their movement was rapid and continuous for four hours within that area,” the chief said.
According to police, there was no immediate evidence the bloodshed was terror-related.
Two more police officers and a civilian were wounded in the shootout but were in stable condition, the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office posted on Twitter.
The deceased officer was a father of five, police said.
The standoff prompted a massive law enforcement deployment with local SWAT teams and federal agents rushing to the scene, as well as emergency services from the neighboring New York City Police Department.
All schools in Jersey City, which faces Manhattan across the Hudson River, were placed on lockdown which was lifted later in the afternoon, according to the mayor and local media.
Few official details of the incident were immediately available. But local media reported the confrontation between suspects and police started in or near a cemetery and was linked to a previous homicide investigation.
In a statement, the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations expressed solidarity with “the Jewish community and all the residents of Jersey City, where it appears members of the community were wounded by gunfire, as were members of the police force responding to gunfire from active shooters.”
“We do not know at this point if the kosher supermarket from which they were firing was an intended target,” the statement continued. “We pray for the safety of all those involved.”
US President Donald Trump said on Twitter: “Just received a briefing on the horrific shootout that took place in Jersey City, NJ. Our thoughts & prayers are w/ the victims & their families during this very difficult & tragic time.
“We will continue to monitor the situation as we assist local & state officials on the ground,” Trump wrote.