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Cousins Charged In Ridgewood Church Shooting Offered 7 Years Each

Alexander Norrell (far left), Joseph Galli with their attorneys
Alexander Norrell (far left), Joseph Galli with their attorneys Photo Credit: Mary K. Miraglia

RIDGEWOOD, N.J. -- Two cousins charged with shooting up a landmark Ridgewood church with an assault rifle were offered seven-year prison sentences in exchange for guilty pleas, an assistant prosecutor said.

Alexander Norrell of Ridgewood and Joseph Galli of North Carolina would have to serve 3½ years without parole if they accept the deals, Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Keith Travers said Tuesday.

Defense lawyers said they would seek to have their clients tried separately.

Norrell had left the U.S. Marines and Galli was still with the Corps when authorities said they fired several high-caliaber bullets at the unoccupied Old Paramus Reformed Church -- one of Bergen County's oldest buildings -- in November and December 2014.

Several rounds went through a stained-glass window of the 200-year-old church, causing $50,000 worth of damage.

Galli, an active lance corporal with the 1st Battalion 6th Marine Regiment, was home on leave at the time, authorities said. Both are 23.

Investigators seized two assault rifles and .223-caliber ammunition matching the kind that they said was used at the church.

Military police at Camp LeJune, N.C., took Galli into custody in January 2015, after which he was brought to New Jersey. The Corps discharged Galli, who'd served 2½ years that included action in Iraq.

Galli remained held on $100,000 bail in the Bergen County Jail. Norell posted $105,000 bail and was released on July 28 after spending nearly seven months behind bars.

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