American Scene

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“He was just shooting he had no intended target,” said a text message from the woman, who was a friend of 19-year-old Jessica Moore, the only person killed.

The woman spoke Sunday by instant messenger on the condition of anonymity because she feared for her safety while the shooter remained at large and was too upset to talk over the phone. 

Students said the shooter was put out of the party when he refused to pay the cover charge. The woman said she heard a fight erupt before the man was thrown out. Seconds later, she said, he returned with a handgun and started shooting as chaos erupted.

“Everyone was scrambling n stampeding. People were jumping out the two windows n all I cud smell was smoke n blood,” the woman wrote. “The next thing I knew I opened my eyes n saw hell..blood n just panic.”

Authorities had not released the names of the four wounded people, whose injuries weren’t considered life-threatening. East Orange police were following several leads but had not identified a suspect, spokesman Andrew Di Elmo said.

VIRGINIA

Court declines to revisit church case

RICHMOND | The Virginia Supreme Court has refused to reconsider its ruling in an Episcopal Church property dispute.

In June the court overturned a judge’s decision giving nine breakaway Episcopal congregations property worth an estimated $30 million to $40 million. The justices said the judge erred when, relying on an 1867 statute, he ruled that the congregations were a branch of the Episcopal Church and could keep the property.

The breakaway congregations asked the justices to reconsider. The court’s decision Friday means the case goes back to Fairfax County Circuit Court for further proceedings.

The congregations split from the Episcopal Church in a disagreement over acceptance of gays, the ordination of women and other theological issues, and aligned with the more conservative Convocation of Anglicans in North America.

WISCONSIN

Levee fails near popular park

PORTAGE | A levee along the Wisconsin River failed Sunday, flooding the access road leading to a park area and cutting off any residents who did not heed daylong warnings to evacuate.

It wasn’t immediately clear how many of the roughly 300 residents remained in Blackhawk Park around 4 p.m. Sunday when the road was closed after the failure of the Caledonia Levee south of Highway 33.

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