Arson set to cover tracks in deadly Newark apartment shooting

Posted: Updated:

Police are looking for leads in an arson that was set to cover up a shooting that left three people dead and two injured in Newark Saturday.

Authorities responded to the three-alarm fire at 546 Sanford Ave. about 4:30 a.m. where they found the bodies of 42-year-old tenant Sandra Bellush, 15-year-old Brielle Simpkins, of Elizabeth, and 19-year-old Eric Jackson, of Newark, in a second-floor apartment. They were shot multiple times. Firefighters also found a 17-year-old boy and 20-year-old man suffering from gunshot wounds. Both were taken to the hospital in serious condition.

Police believe the victims may have know their assailants, but investigators do not have any suspects in the case.

Simpkins? grandfather, Harry James, says the teen was about to start school and be a cheerleader. While he is mourning her loss, neighbors say the violent incident highlights the common problem of crime plaguing their streets.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."