A gunman disguised as a FedEx driver attacked the family of U.S. federal judge Esther Salas on Sunday, killing her son and wounding her husband when they answered the door of their New Jersey home.
Salas was in the basement of her home when the shooting occurred and she was uninjured, according to a judiciary official who spoke with The Associated Press. Chief District Judge Freda Wolfson told the AP that Salas’ 20-year-old son Daniel Aderl was shot and killed and her husband Mark Aderl was wounded.
The gunman fled after shooting Salas’ son and husband. On Sunday, the FBI tweeted they were still searching for the gunman.
“The FBI is investigating a shooting that occurred at the home of Judge Ester Salas in North Brunswick Township, New Jersey earlier this evening, July 19. We’re looking for one subject & ask that anyone who thinks they may have relevant information call us at 1-973-792-3000,” the FBI’s Newark, New Jersey office tweeted.
The FBI is investigating a shooting that occurred at the home of Judge Ester Salas in North Brunswick Township, New Jersey earlier this evening, July 19. We’re looking for one subject & ask that anyone who thinks they may have relevant information call us at 1-973-792-3000.
— FBI Newark (@FBINewark) July 20, 2020
Daniel was Salas’ only child.
Mark, 63, who is also a criminal defense attorney, was in critical but stable condition after undergoing emergency surgery following the shooting, the New Jersey Globe reported.
Salas was nominated to her current court position in 2011 by President Barack Obama and was the first Latina woman to serve as a federal judge in New Jersey.
Salas has presided over a high profile case against “Real Housewives of New Jersey” reality TV stars Teresa and Joe Giudice. Salas sent the reality TV couple to prison on bankruptcy fraud and tax evasion charges. She staggered the sentences for the two TV stars so that at least one of them would be available to watch after their four children at a given time.
Salas was also recently assigned to preside over a lawsuit brought by Deutsche Bank investors over allegations the financial institution made false statements about its anti-money laundering efforts and failed to monitor “high risk” customers like convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
In a statement emailed to the AP, Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy called the shooting “a senseless act” and said, “this tragedy is our latest reminder that gun violence remains a crisis in our country and that our work to make every community safer isn’t done.”
A FedEx spokesperson told Fox News the company is “fully cooperating” with the investigation into the shooting attack, given the allegation the gunman was wearing a company uniform.