Five people were shot and killed in two separate shootings in and around Newark, N.J., on Wednesday, an outbreak of violence that led to renewed questions about public safety in New Jersey’s largest city.
The violence began about 12:45 a.m. outside a strip club in Irvington, where three men were fatally shot and two wounded. It culminated nearby about 10 p.m. in a shooting in Newark’s South Ward neighborhood that left a 13-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy dead; another young person was wounded but expected to survive.
With the two teenagers’ deaths, Newark has had at least 100 killings this year, a number last reached in 2006, according to The Associated Press.
While the investigation was still in its early stages, the police said that the teenagers did not appear to have been targeted, but that they were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Their identities were not released.
The shootings were 10 days after a lawyer was killed by carjackers in front of his wife after a day of shopping at a suburban mall. Four men, all of whom are from Newark or Irvington, have been arrested and charged in that killing.
The lawyer, Dustin J. Friedland, and his wife, Jamie Schare Friedland, were getting into their Range Rover in a parking garage at the Mall at Short Hills in Millburn when he was attacked by two armed men. The men sped off with the vehicle, which was eventually found abandoned in Newark.
The police began an investigation that involved some six different agencies, and on Saturday announced the arrests of the four men.
In September, after 10 people were shot and killed over 10 days in Newark, the authorities announced a plan to step up police patrols in troubled neighborhoods.
The neighborhood where the teenagers were shot Wednesday is one of the city’s most violent. It borders Irvington, where the other deadly shooting took place at the start of the day outside Slick’s Go Go Bar, on a desolate corner in an industrial part of the town.
A confrontation started after several men were denied entry because they were intoxicated and the bouncer, Woodley Daniel, discovered a gun on one of the men.
“It appears the gunman was trying to enter the bar armed and was stopped by the bouncer,” Chief Anthony Ambrose of the Essex County prosecutor’s office said in a statement.
There was a scuffle and then shots were fired. The bouncer, Daniel, 32, of Hillside, was killed along with Pierre Clervoyant Jr., 34, of Elizabeth, the manager and son of the club’s owner. A third victim was identified by the police as Mushir Cureton, 27, of Newark.