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Widow of Short Hills mall carjacking victim files suit

March 15, 2014 2:11:40 PM PDT
The widow of an attorney who was shot dead during a carjacking at an upscale New Jersey mall is suing the mall owners and a first aid squad.

Jamie Schare Friedland filed a wrongful-death lawsuit in Newark this week in the death of Hoboken resident Dustin Friedland.

He was shot in the head in front of her on Dec. 15 as they returned to their Range Rover in the parking deck of The Mall at Short Hills.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages. It alleges Michigan-based mall operator Taubman Centers Inc. reduced security to increase its profits.

Messages left for Taubman Centers haven't been returned.

Four men charged in the fatal carjacking pleaded not guilty in January to felony murder and other charges.

Hanif Thompson, 29, of Irvington, and Newark residents Karif Ford, 31, Basim Henry, 32, and Kevin Roberts, 33, were arraigned on charges of murder, felony murder, carjacking, conspiracy, possession of a weapon and possession of a weapon for unlawful purpose. Their public defenders entered not-guilty pleas for them.

Friedland, a 30-year-old lawyer from Hoboken, was killed while returning to his car in the mall parking garage with his wife after a shopping trip, authorities said. The carjackers confronted the couple and Friedland was shot in the head, authorities said.

The assailants drove off in the couple's silver Range Rover, which was found the next morning in Newark, about 10 miles from Short Hills. Prosecutors have said the couple was targeted solely because of the make of their vehicle.

Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray said the "sheer senselessness" of the crime outraged residents and led to tips pouring in from across Essex County, whose borders encompass crime-plagued Newark to the east and Short Hills and other affluent suburbs to the west.


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