Days after escaping a quadruple murder that left three of his family members dead, Steven Kologi Jr. took to Instagram to remember his "beautiful and smart" sister and "the greatest parents I could ask for." "I just wish I could tell all of them how much they meant to me and how much I truly loved each and every one of them because I didn't do that enough," Kologi wrote, per the Newark Star-Ledger. Authorities say Kologi's 16-year-old brother opened fire inside the family's home in Long Branch, NJ, just before midnight on New Year's Eve, killing Steven Kologi, 44; Linda Kologi, 42; Brittany Kologi, 18; and a family friend, 70-year-old Mary Schultz. Prosecutors say Steven Kologi Jr. and his grandfather were home at the time of the shooting but were not harmed.
The 16-year-old suspect, identified by the Asbury Park Press as Scott Kologi, had a learning disability and was home-schooled by his mother following bullying in elementary school, a family friend tells the Star-Ledger. She describes him as a "friendly, funny teenager" who liked to tell jokes. "I can't understand why he flipped out," she says, per the Park Press. "I can't think of anything." Police haven't disclosed a motive, but the teen—who was to make his first court appearance via video conference on Tuesday morning, per CBS New York—will face charges of four counts of murder and possession of a firearm for an unlawful purpose. Prosecutors, who are aiming to try him as an adult, say the semi-automatic rifle used in the shooting was legally owned by a family member, who has not been identified. (Read more New Jersey stories.)