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A FEDERAL judge whose son was killed and her husband critically injured in a shooting at their home is receiving 24-hour protection from US Marshals, according to reports.
The incident took place on Sunday at the home of Judge Esther Salas, who last week was appointed to hear an ongoing lawsuit with ties to Jeffrey Epstein.
Salas' son, Daniel Anderl, 20, was killed and her husband Mark Anderl, a 63-year-old criminal defense attorney, was critically wounded after a gunman — dressed as a FedEx delivery driver — ambushed them inside their home in North Brunswick, New Jersey.
Sources told ABC News that Judge Salas, 51, had received threats in the past.
On Monday, the suspect, Roy Den Hollander, was found dead near Liberty, New York, from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound, law enforcement officials said.
Hollander, a self-described anti-feminist attorney, previously represented a New Jersey woman who was suing the US Selective Service System so she could register for the male-only draft, the New Jersey Globe reported.
Salas had agreed to hear the case, filed in 2015 – but in 2019, the judge dismissed part of the lawsuit, while another part was still pending.
Hollander had mentioned Judge Salas in writings posted online, saying she was a ladder-climber who traded on her Hispanic heritage to get ahead.
He also reportedly wrote about posing as a FedEx delivery person to speak to a young girl – the same tactic used by the New Jersey gunman who arrived at Salas' home on Sunday.
Hollander's writings also connected to the area where he was reportedly found dead, mentioning a family cabin the Catskills community of Beavertown, around a 40 minute drive from Liberty.
The attorney – who gained notoriety for over the years for his unsuccessful lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of ladies night promotions at bars and nightclubs – appeared on the likes of The Colbert Report and MSNBC.
Francis Womack, a family friend and the mayor of North Brunswick, said Judge Salas had received death threats in the past: "As a judge, she had threats from time to time, but everyone is saying that recently there had not been any."
A neighbor said Salas had told them in the past that her status as a public figure could make her a target.
“She had some high-profile cases, and she was always a little concerned,” Marion Costanza, who attended Salas' swearing-in ceremony, told The New York Times.
Constanza said of the family: “There’s no-one like them. They’re extremely good-natured. They would do anything for anyone.”
Attorney General William Barr said on Monday he's ordered a thorough investigation of the shooting.
“On behalf of the entire Justice Department, I send my deepest condolences to Judge Salas and her family on the death of their son and wish her husband a swift and complete recovery," Barr said in a statement.
"This kind of lawless, evil action carried out against a member of the federal judiciary will not be tolerated, and I have ordered the full resources of the FBI and U.S. Marshals Service to investigate the matter.”
The shooting happened at around 5pm when Mark reportedly answered the front door of the family home and was shot several times by the gunman.
His son Daniel, a student at Catholic University in Washington, DC, then came to investigate and was fatally shot "through the heart," according to reports.
Salas, 51, was in the basement at the time of the shootings and was not injured.
Neighbor Wenfeng Zhang, 44, told The Sun he locked eyes with the suspect moments after he carried out the shooting, but didn’t realize what had just happened at the time.
“He looked at me and I looked at him when he was walking from the house to his car,” Zhang said. “Then he walked calmly up to his car and drove away."
“He looked normal. Not in a rush or anything. I thought he just delivered something."
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Zhang said he became suspicious when he also drove away from the street and saw police cars racing toward the neighborhood.
“I rang my wife who was still at home and she told me they were across the street and the whole road was being blocked off."
Zhang’s wife, Jenny Wang, told The Sun she heard gunshots and a scream outside her home around 5pm on Sunday.
“I thought it was fireworks, they just went bang, bang, bang," she said. “I heard three or four shots.”
The attack came days after the federal judge was assigned a case linked to pedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein.
Salas had been appointed to hear an ongoing lawsuit brought by Deutsche Bank investors.
The investors claim the company made false and misleading statements about its anti-money laundering policies and failed to monitor "high-risk" customers – a list that included Epstein.
Salas's highest-profile case cam in 2014, when she sentenced Real Housewives of New Jersey star Teresa Guidice to prison for fraud.
On Monday, Guidice said she was praying for the judge and her family following the shooting.
The RHONJ star’s attorney, James Leonard Jr, told The Sun: "Teresa was very shaken by the news and was very emotional when she heard about it."
Salas was nominated to the US District Court by President Barack Obama in November 2010.
Before being promoted by Obama, Salas served nine years as an assistant federal public defender in Newark.
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