NJ Student Killed in Shooting Near School Identified, 2nd Victim Expected to Survive

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Investigators want to know who shot and killed a high school student Sunday night at a sports complex in a New Jersey town.

Officials in Maplewood say 18-year-old Moussa Fofana was gunned down around 9:30 p.m. at Underhill Field, blocks away from Columbia High School where he was a junior. A second student, not identified by officials, was shot in the leg and was able to run for help. That student is expected to survive.

Those who knew Fofana said that he was with two friends when they took a shortcut through the high school football field on their way to another friend's house to watch the Floyd Mayweather-Logan Paul boxing match, but they seemingly got into a fight of their own.

"Instead of going all the way around, you can cut through Underhill and I guess they got into an altercation with some people," said Joe Fabiano, a classmate and friend of Fofana.

A high school student was killed in a shooting late Sunday night at a sports complex near Columbia High School in Maplewood.

Investigators were seen searching the bleachers, the field and the track for evidence Monday morning. Students at a nearby elementary school were kept inside for recess during the day as police continued their investigation.

The superintendent for the South Orange and Maplewood School District sent a letter to families notifying them of the shooting.

"It is with a very heavy heart that we confirm there was a shooting last night with multiple victims at Underhill. One person was killed and at least one other was wounded," Dr. Ronald Taylor wrote.

According to Taylor, both victims were students of Columbia High School. Mental health support will be provided at the high school, as well as Maplewood Middle and Clinton Elementary.

Fofana was in the 11th grade, Principal Frank Sanchez said in his own letter to parents. He didn't release the age of the second victim but said the student was hospitalized.

"At this time, out of respect for the family and due to the ongoing nature of the police investigation, we are unable to share the names of the affected students.  We offer our sincere condolences to the family in their time of need. We will follow up with additional communication as we receive clearance from the local law enforcement and the family," Taylor's letter concluded.

Activities previously scheduled at Underhill Field have been canceled due to the ongoing police investigation as well as outdoor activities at neighboring Clinton Elementary School.

Calling Fofana's death a tragedy, Gov. Phil Murphy took a moment to acknowledge the victims at the start of the COVID-19 briefing on Monday. He also identified the second victim as 17 years old.

Essex County prosecutors are reportedly leading the investigation.

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