UNION, N.J. — A shooting at a New Jersey roller skating rink during a Christmas party for young people has left one boy dead, according to authorities and witnesses.
Authorities said 16-year-old Jean D'Haiti from Elizabeth was shot after a fight spilled out to the parking lot of the Skate 22 rink in Union about 10 minutes past midnight on Friday. He was pronounced dead when police arrived.
"It was rented out for a private party. At some point before the shooting, there were two groups of people fighting, words were exchanged and shots rang out," said John Holl, a spokesman for Union County Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow.
Some of the nearly 700 teens and young adults, ages 13-25, who attended the Thursday night party told television stations at the scene that fights between groups of girls erupted throughout the night.
But Romankow said authorities weren't sure they were members of a gang, but believes that two "factions of organized groups" from Elizabeth were involved in the incident.
Romankow said there was only one gunmen, though he declined to name any possible suspects. He would also not say how many times D'Haiti was shot or where, and declined to say how many shots were fired in all.
Felicia Johnson said there was a gang fight outside the rink and that a boy about 15 or 16 years old was shot twice in the head and died.
Teenager Diamond Watkins said the boy was shot in front of her. She says screaming people stampeded toward the doors to get out and some were trampled.
Police are still investigating and no arrests have been made, Romankow said.