New Jersey News

Newark murders hit triple digits

Friday, December 27, 2013

Murders in Newark hit triple digits this year for the first time in seven years.

One of the latest includes a 13-year-old girl who was throwing out the trash.

Police say she was not the intended target.

Zainee Hailey was a shy 13-year-old who was just starting to show a lot more confidence. She was always good in school, but had become more active in her church and had her best Christmas ever.

Michael Peterson says his granddaughter had been opening Christmas presents in his house just a few hours earlier and she was killed while doing her chores.

Zainee is one of the latest fatalities in a year where the murder rate has spiked in Newark. So far in 2013, there have been 102 murders. The last time the murder rate was in triple digits was in 2007 when there were 107 murders.

Most of the crimes have taken place in the west and south wards of the city. The police director says many of these killings are assassinations.

There has also been a noticeable increase in murders since September when 10 people were killed in 10 days.

Since then the violence has jumped.

For family members the numbers mean little and they feel unfortunate they have joined this tragic statistic and they want answers.

(Copyright ©2014 WABC-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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