Lights Out!

Molly Bloom, Jersey Journal (Jersey City), Feb. 24

Less than 24 hours after the third late-night shooting at Crown Fried Chicken in Jersey City in as many months, Mayor Jerramiah Healy announced yesterday that the city will begin enforcing its business curfew. The curfew requires most restaurant and retail businesses to be closed between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. every day.

The business curfew is partly designed to target late-night hangouts like Crown Fried Chicken on Crescent and Communipaw avenues, which is open until 3 a.m. Full enforcement of the curfew will begin by the end of March, Healy said.

Yesterday’s shooting occurred at 2:20 a.m., when a group of about five men attacked two Jersey City men in the restaurant’s parking lot during a carjacking, said Police Capt. Jon Tooke.

One victim was shot in the neck and was in “serious but not life-threatening” condition at the Jersey City Medical Center last night, Tooke said. The other victim suffered cuts and bruises and was treated and released from the Medical Center, Tooke said.

No one has been arrested in the carjacking and police say the investigation is ongoing.

The ordinance creating the business curfew was adopted in October 2003 during the administration of Mayor Glenn D. Cunningham but was never enforced because of a successful court challenge that argued it unfairly impacted African-American neighborhoods.

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Other victims of recent attacks at Crown Fried Chicken have included a teenage girl and a 26-year-old man who were stabbed multiple times during a June 2000 street fight, a 31-year-old man stabbed to death in August 2003 and two men shot as they sat in their car in the restaurant parking lot early this past Christmas morning.

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