New York

38 Years After Murder of New York Man, Suspect is Arrested

What to Know

  • Authorities in Bergen County have charged a New York man with a murder committed nearly 40 years ago in New Jersey
  • Joseph Labosco, 71, of Staten Island was arrested Monday; He's currently serving a prison sentence in New York for an unrelated crime
  • The body of 50-year-old Manhattan resident Wayne Eckhart was found in October 1980 in a remote area of Teaneck, dead from gunshot wounds

Thirty-eight years after the body of a New York man was found shot to death in northern New Jersey, authorities have arrested a suspect in the slaying.

Joseph Labosco, of Staten Island, was charged with murder on Monday. The 71-year-old is currently imprisoned in New York for an unrelated crime.

Labosco is accused of killing 50-year-old Wayne Eckhart, of Manhattan, whose body was found in a remote area in Teaneck in October 1980.

The case went cold after an initial investigation, until the newly formed cold case homicide unit of the Bergen County prosecutor's office reopened it this year and identified Labosco as a suspect.

Investigators interviewed witnesses and submitted evidence to the state police forensic crime lab.

Prosecutors say a second suspect in the killing, George King, of New York, died in 2007.

According to New York state prison records, Labosco served 11 years in prison for manslaughter beginning in 1970 and also was convicted on a weapons charge in the mid-1980s.

In May, he pleaded guilty to drug possession and violating the terms of his supervised release after police found drugs at his home last December.

An initial court appearance in New Jersey hadn't been scheduled for Labosco, and it wasn't immediately known if he had retained an attorney who could comment on the charge.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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