The unknown assailant disguised as a Federal Express delivery driver gunned down Judge Esther Salas’s 20-year-old son, Daniel Anderl, and shot her 63-year-old husband, Mark Anderl, at the North Brunswick estate around 5 p.m., authorities told the New Jersey Globe.
The 20-year-old son of a prominent New Jersey federal judge was shot dead and her husband was critically injured in an attack at their home Sunday evening
Salas , who is believed to have been in the basement of the home at the time of the attack , was not injured.
Sources told ABC News that the judge’s son, a student at Catholic University in Washington, D.C., answered the door and was immediately struck.
“He was shot through the heart,” North Brunswick Mayor Francis “Mac” Womack told the outlet.
A friend told NJ.com that the young man was planning to go to law school.
“He had his whole future ahead,” the friend, Joe Mauro, said.
Mark Anderl , a well-regarded criminal defense attorney — was in critical but stable condition Sunday night after undergoing surgery at Robert Wood Johnson Hospital in New Brunswick, the Globe reported.
Salas — who sentenced “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star Teresa Giudice to more than a year in prison for fraud in 2014 — has served as a U.S. District Court judge in Newark for nine years. She has also been responsible for several other high-profile cases, including ones involving the leaders of street gangs.
In 2017, she barred federal prosecutors from seeking the death penalty against an alleged gang leader charged in several slayings. She later sentenced him to 45 years in prison.
It wasn’t immediately clear who the target of the shooting was — but Salas had recently received threats, according to the Globe.
The gunman was at large Sunday night as a massive law enforcement response was underway, officials said.
The FBI in Newark said it was investigating the shooting and looking for a lone suspect. The agency asked that anyone with relevant information call 973-792-3001.
Salas is the first Hispanic woman to serve on the federal bench in the state. She worked as a public defender and a federal magistrate before President Barack Obama nominated her to serve as a District Court Judge in 2010.
Recently, she has presided over an ongoing lawsuit from Deutsche Bank investors who claim the company failed to monitor “high-risk” customers including late pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
“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,” Murphy said.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy called the shooting “a senseless act” in a statement.