A 12-year-old New Jersey girl who died after being hit by a stray bullet was mourned by hundreds Friday, hours after one suspect in the Paterson shooting pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and prosecutors announced charges against two other suspects.
Mourners lined up outside a Paterson church to pay their final respects to Genesis Rincon.
Jeffery Ellerbee, 21, of Paterson was charged with first-degree murder and weapons charges and Marshae Anthony, 19, of Paterson, faces two weapons charges, Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia Valdez said. The prosecutor asked bail to be set for $2 million for Ellerbee and $75,000 for Anthony. Information on their attorneys was not immediately available.
Earlier Friday, defense attorney Harley Breite said that 19-year-old Jhymiere Moore turned himself in earlier this week because he had heard he was a target of the investigation into Rincon's death.
Police believe the suspect was aiming a handgun at someone else when Rincon was struck in the head on Saturday night in Paterson while she was riding a scooter. She was declared brain-dead after the shooting on Rosa Parks Boulevard but was kept on life support until Monday night so her organs could be donated.
Outside Rincon's funeral the lines snaked around the block Friday night. One of the girl's aunts said her organs had gone to help eight people.
Moore also faces weapons charges. His bail was kept at $3 million, but Breite says he's seeking to have it reduced.
He also said Moore is being used as a "scapegoat'' for the city's violence.
"The wrongful persecution of a 19-year-old city youth is not the answer to what's going on Paterson,'' said Breite. "One thing is for sure: the killer of that young girl was not in court today."
Overall crime in Paterson is down, but there has been a dramatic increase in gun violence, acting Police Chief William Fraher said earlier this week. There were 40 nonfatal shootings in the city in 2010 compared with 53 nonfatal shootings in the city so far this year, Fraher said.
He noted 125 police officers were laid off in 2011.
People attending the funeral said the violence in Paterson needs to end.
"It's so horrible, this city needs help," said Katherine Pimentel, a cousin who attended the funeral and was overcome with tears.
--Danielle Elias contributed reporting