3 arrested, 2 wanted in Essex County Christmas murder spree

3 arrested, 2 wanted in Essex County murders

3 arrested, 2 wanted in Essex County murders (12/31/13)

NEWARK - Authorities have arrested three people and are looking for two others in connection to a string of homicides in Essex County around the Christmas holiday.

Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray announced that a 15-year-old boy faces two counts of murder in the Christmas night shooting deaths of two Newark children.

The juvenile was apprehended in connection with the fatal shootings of 13-year-old Zainee Hailey and 15-year-old Kasson Morman outside a home in the southern end of Newark on Christmas night. She says the juvenile, whose name was not disclosed due to his age, is also facing attempted murder of a third shooting victim and weapons charges. He's being held in a youth detention facility.

A funeral for the girl, Zainee Hailey, was held today. The honors student had returned from her grandfather's house in Elizabeth and was taking out the trash when she was shot.

Murray also said police arrested 18-year-old Damiar Pendergrass, of Newark, today in connection to the Dec. 21 murder of a Newark college student. A warrant has been issued for Raquan Langford, 19, of Newark. Both suspects are charged with the murder of 18-year-old Reginald Terry. They also face conspiracy and weapons charges.

Anthony Fields, 19, of Newark, has been charged with three counts of murder and weapons offenses in the Christmas morning shooting deaths of three men at Slick's Go-Go Bar in Irvington, Murray said. Two other people were shot and injured in the incident. Authorities are still looking for Fields, who has been identified as their prime suspect.

"Fields remains at large and is considered a fugitive at this time," Murray said.

The prosecutor's office also detailed the arrest of a man who has been charged with the stabbing death of his pregnant wife. Babatope Owoseni, 33, of East Orange, is charged with the murder of 26-year-old Fatoumata Owoseni. Authorities found the body of the woman in an apartment on South Munn Avenue on Dec 27. She was nine months pregnant.

Authorities said the county and federal officials are actively seeking the suspects that remain at large. The prosecutor's office thanks the law enforcement agencies on the local, state, county and federal who helped investigate the incidents.

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