Woman murdered in front of kids

June 27, 2008 4:11:55 AM PDT
A woman was shot and killed inside a YMCA in New Jersey Thursday.Authorities say a man and a woman were arguing in the hallway near a swimming class for 3 and 4 year olds.

The man apparently opened fire, hitting the woman, according to police. Paul Loriquet, a spokesman for the Essex County Prosecutor's Office, says several children witnessed the shooting, including the victim's two children.

The gunman fled the scene and was last seen in a white jeep. The woman was pronounced dead at the scene.

She has been identified as 31-year-old Monica Paul. She was a resident of Montclair and a member of the YMCA.

Paul's 11-year-old daughter was with her outside the pool, while her 4-year-old son was swimming in the pool at the time of the shooting.

The suspect has been identified as 37-year-old Kenneth Duckett, who is the father of the two children. Police believe an accomplice was waiting in the jeep. The vehicle was later recovered in Orange.

The building was evacuated, and people could be seen standing in their bathing suits outside the Helen and Bill Geyer YMCA Family Center, located at 159 Glenridge Avenue in Montclair.

Police believe Duckett had violated a restraining order. He is described as a ight-skinned black man, approximately 5-foot-6 and 140 to 155 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes.

If anyone has any information, they can contact the Essex County Homicide Squad at (973) 621-4586 or the Montclair Police Department.