By: Michael Mandarino, Follow South Jersey Managing Editor
FAIRFIELD TOWNSHIP, N.J. — Brailyn Holmes, a 19-year-old woman from Millville, died at a Camden hospital on Monday after she was one of 14 people who were shot at a birthday party in Fairfield Township.
Holmes, a class of 2020 graduate of Bridgeton High School, is the third person to pass away as a result of the mass shooting, which New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal referred to as a “targeted attack” during a press briefing on Sunday. Bridgeton natives Kevin Elliott, 30, and Asia Hester, 25, are the other two victims to have lost their lives as a result of the mass shooting.
Bridgeton Public Schools Superintendent Keith Miles Jr. released a statement in response to Holmes’ passing.
“The death of Brailyn Holmes is devastating news for our school community,” Superintendent Miles said. “Brailyn is remembered as an honors student with an energetic personality and so much promise. On behalf of the Bridgeton school community, I express our heartfelt sympathy to Brailyn’s family, friends, and loved ones during this very difficult time.”
The New Jersey State Police has made two arrests in connection with the shooting. Kevin Dawkins was arrested in the wee hours of Sunday morning when he was found laying beside a tree near the house armed with a loaded handgun. He faces two charges of allegedly being armed at the party and being armed while law enforcement arrested him.
Additionally, Darrell Dawkins was also arrested on a firearm possession charge after the shooting. Investigators obtained a search warrant for the property that includes vehicles, and his vehicle was parked on the property and had a 9-millimeter pistol in the trunk.
At this time, Darrell Dawkins is not believed to be the shooter, but law enforcement is still investigating how exactly the shooting began. It’s also unclear whether Kevin and Darrell Dawkins are related or not.
The authorities’ investigation into Saturday night’s shooting is still ongoing. Anyone with additional information regarding the incident — including a potential motive — is urged to contact the New Jersey State Police’s Bridgeton Station by calling (856) 451-0101. You can also reach out to the Cumberland County Prosecutor’s Office’s anonymous tip hotline by visiting its website.
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