The bus stop at the corner of Bidwell Avenue and Martin Luther King Drive in Jersey City was blocked by media trucks at 7 a.m. Wednesday as Kareem Lowery was waiting for his ride to work in Secaucus.
A day earlier, Lowery left work in a panic because Sacred Heart School, where his daughters – ages 5 and 9 – attend is located across from the store where Tuesday’s furious firefight took place following the shooting of Det. Joseph Seals during an encounter with armed gunman. The battle left Seals and five others dead, including the two suspects.
Security cameras show that the shooters targeted the Kosher grocery store on MLK Drive and that two Jersey City police officers on foot patrol immediately responded and engaged the gunmen, according to Mayor Steven Fulop.
Sacred Heart School includes children from pre-school through eighth grade.
“You think of the what if’s as a parent. What if it happened when they were coming out of school?” Lowery asked. The kids, he said were “scared to death.” The school announced a 10 a.m. delayed opening.
On Wednesday morning, there was still a cluster of bullet holes in the school window.
As snow fell and melted, dozens of reporters armed with microphones, cameras and TV vans continued to block the street. People in work clothes struggled to get through the media crush.
Photographers focused their lenses on the market across the street, where the wild shootout took place. There were bullet holes in the school’s concrete building, blue and purple latex gloves strewn in the street outside the market.
Inside the store, men in vests appeared to be cleaning the crime scene and could be seen placing items in red plastic bags.
The crew refused to speak with reporters and one of them moved a trunk in an apparent attempt to block a cameraman’s view. Next door to the store was a synagogue where the doors appeared mangled.
“Let’s be clear,” New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson tweeted. “The location was (a) kosher supermarket and gathering spot for the Jewish community. Anti-Semitism is sickeningly on the rise across the country but especially here.”
Earl Hendricks lives down the block from the bodega. He said he does not shop there but knows the store caters to the Jewish community.
Hendricks said he stopped to see the aftermath Wednesday morning on his way to work in Newark.
“I’ve never seen so much killing in one day at one time,” he said.
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