Jersey City Shooting Suspects 'Targeted' Kosher Grocery Store, Mayor Says


The Mayor of Jersey City, New Jersey said Wednesday morning that the two shooting suspects responsible for an hours-long standoff and gun battle with police had "targeted" the kosher grocery store in the busy neighborhood.

"Last night after extensive review of our CCTV system it has now become clear from the cameras that these two individuals targeted the Kosher grocery location on MLK Dr," Mayor Steven Fulop tweeted Wednesday morning. "The 2 JCPD officers that were on a foot post one block away immediately responded/engaged and prevented the perpetrators from leaving that location and harming any further civilians. At this time we have no credible further threats from this incident but out of an abundance of caution we will be increasing our police presence in the community."

One of the two suspects reportedly posted anti-police and anti-semitic writings to their social media page, three sources told NBC News. Inside the van used by the shooters, authorities found religious writings, the outlet reported. Four law enforcement sources told NBC New York the shooting suspects were identified as David Anderson and Francine Graham, both of whom were found dead inside the store following the standoff.

Security footage showed the shooters traveling through the neighborhood in a U-Haul van and stopping outside the store while armed with long guns and opening fire on the store.

"There were multiple other people on the streets," Public Safety Director James Shea said. "There were many other targets available to them that they bypassed to attack that place. So it was, clearly, that was their target, and they intended to harm people inside there."

Three other people were discovered fatally shot inside the Kosher grocery store, officials said. Only one victim has been identified by authorities - Jersey City police Det. Joseph Seals, 39. Officials say Seals was killed after police investigating a murder approached the two suspects with one of the suspects opening fire on the officers, hitting Seals in the head. Authorities believe the detective was likely shot while he was trying to stop the suspect, Police Chief Mike Kelly said.

Authorities declined to say how the detective's death might have been connected with the shooting and standoff. Authorities cautioned that the shooters' motive is still not clear, and is still under investigation.

Fulop said the state attorney general's office and the Hudson County Prosecutor's office would handle the formal investigation into Wednesday's shooting.

Photo: Getty Images

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