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Man Charged With Killing Seven People In Pennsylvania And New Jersey

Union County Prosecutor Grace Park called the killing spree "horrific and unprecedented."

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New Jersey authorities on Thursday arrested Todd West, 22, and charged him with shootings of seven people – including his cousin – across two states.

In late June, West allegedly killed three people and wounded a fourth in his hometown of Elizabeth, New Jersey. Authorities believe he knew two of the victims, though the other alleged attacks were at random.

At the time of those alleged incidents, police were already searching for West as a suspect in his cousin's murder in May.

West fled New Jersey and allegedly shot and killed a man in Easton, Pennsylvania, on Sunday. Forty-five minutes later, prosecutors said, shot and killed a man and woman in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

He was arrested by local police in Allentown on suspicion he participated in three knife-point muggings committed in the area. Another cousin of West's, Robert A. Jourdain, was arrested with him and is also being investigated for multiple murders.

Union County Prosecutor Grace Park called the killing spree "horrific and unprecedented," in a press conference on Thursday.

"I don't know how you would define a mass killer, all I would say is that we have never seen one individual commit this type of shooting spree, murder spree in such a short period of time here in this county."

Park said that authorities believe he acted alone and not in conjunction with any gang. The same .38 caliber six-shot revolver, found on West at the time of arrest, was used in each of the shootings.

West is currently being held at Lehigh County jail in Allentown with a cumulative bail for multiple murder and weapon charges at $5.5 million, Park said.

Ema O'Connor is a politics reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC.

Contact Ema O'Connor at ema.oconnor@buzzfeed.com.

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