Shock and sadness continue to besiege a Morris County community as family and friends try to come to terms with the murder of a young mother, gunned down along with her husband as the couple walked with their 3-year-old son down a quiet street in northern New Jersey.
Police are following several leads in the death of 27-year-old Nazish Noorani, a Pakistani-born woman who lived in the United States, but authorities do not believe the attack was random. Noorani's husband, Kashif Pervaiz, was shot four times and is listed in stable condition at a local hospital. The child was unharmed.
The Morris County prosecutor's office has said a preliminary investigation suggests the shooting was not random. A law enforcement source tells NBC New York that it is not being considered a hate crime.
"From what we have already determined ... it should be noted that this shooting clearly appears to be target specific and that there is not a continuing danger to the general public at large," said Morris County Prosecutor Robert Bianchi.
Noorani's cousin, Muhammad Khan, said Noorani was dressed in cultural clothing at the time of the shooting, though she was not wearing a hijab.
Khan told NBC New York the family was walking the few short blocks from the home of the woman's sister to her father's home on Cedar Street in Boonton when gunfire erupted Tuesday night.
Police believe there were three suspects involved in the shooting. One of them may have used an automatic weapon. No arrests have been made.
Katie Vakstad, an emergency responder, was among the first to reach Noorani.
"The woman was down, laying on her back, with a gunshot wound to her chest area," Vakstad said. "They were doing CPR on her, using the defibrillator on her."
Noorani's father-in-law, Shafiq Hassan, tells NBC New York the couple recently lived between his home in Brooklyn and Boston, where Pervaiz was studying at Harvard for his doctoral degree in architecture and engineering.
The couple met at a concert in New Jersey, Hassan said. They wed six years ago in Boonton.