A 16-year-old boy from New Jersey is accused of using a semi-automatic rifle to fatally gun down his parents, sister, and elderly family friend on New Year’s Eve – just twenty minutes before midnight – in a case that has traumatized the local community.
The culprit, identified as Scott Kologi of Long Branch by local outlets, allegedly killed his parents, Steven and Linda Kologi, his 18-year-old sister, Brittany, and 70-year-old Mary Schultz, a family friend who lived with them, the New York Post reported.
Monmouth County Prosecutor Chris Gramiccioni announced that Scott Kologi will face four counts of murder and a weapon offense in connection to the shooting, which took place inside the Kologi family home in the coastal town of Long Branch.
According to local reports, Scott was autistic and required special care from his mother. He did not attend the same public schools as his siblings, but was otherwise considered functional and could communicate.
Police were called to the scene just after 11:30 pm and were able to take the shooter into custody without incident, ABC 13 reported. The shooting was described as an isolated domestic incident and the culprit’s brother, Steven Kologi Jr., and grandfather were not targeted. They managed to leave the home unharmed.
Steven Jr. took to Instagram to offer an emotional tribute to his slain parents, whom he remembered as “the greatest parents I could ask for.”
“Never once was I without a hot meal or a roof over my head,” he wrote in a statement reposted on Facebook. “They made sure Christmas came every year although they struggled financially. I cannot even describe the type of people they were so just believe me when I say how great they were.”
“As for my sister she was so beautiful and smart. I just wish I could tell all of them how much they meant to me and how much I truly loved each and every one of them because I didn’t do that enough,” he added.