New Jersey

Newark Police Lieutenant Allegedly Shoots Estranged Wife to Death, Wounds Boyfriend

What to Know

  • A Newark police lieutenant has been arrested after he allegedly shot and killed his estranged wife at her home in Jefferson late Sunday
  • Sources say the officer also allegedly shot and seriously injured his wife's boyfriend while two children were inside the home; kids were OK
  • The officer was later taken into custody at his parent's house in Livingston, authorities with the prosecutor's office said

An off-duty New Jersey police lieutenant allegedly shot and killed his estranged wife and seriously injured her boyfriend late Sunday, then was apprehended at his parents' house in a different part of the state hours later, officials said.

Newark police Lt. John Formisano was arrested early Monday in Livingston, not long after cops responded to reports of shots fired at a home on Mirror Place in Jefferson Township. The 24-year veteran of the force and was charged with murder, attempted murder, endangering the welfare of a child and weapon possession.

Details on the circumstances surrounding the shooting in the White Rock section of Jefferson weren't immediately clear, but police sources familiar with the investigation tell News 4 two children were in the house at the time. Both were unharmed when the 49-year-old Formisano allegedly fled the bloody scene. 

Authorities have not released the name of his estranged wife nor the name of her boyfriend, who remains hospitalized in critical condition. Chopper 4 showed a sprawling law enforcement presence at a two-story suburban home with a pool in the backyard early Monday. A large sheet obscured a mass on the front steps, just outside the front door, though it wasn't clear if that was a victim or evidence.

It wasn't immediately clear if Formisano had an attorney who could comment on his behalf. 

“The Newark Public Safety Department is deeply saddened by the family tragedy involving Newark Police Lt. John Formisano. Our foremost concern, of course, is for the couple’s two children who have lost their mother and for the family of the victim," Newark Public Safety Director Anthony F. Ambrose said in a statement.

 “Lt. Formisano’s colleagues in our police division were shocked by the news of the shooting and we recognize it this is a tragedy beyond comprehension for all involved,” Ambrose's statement goes on to say.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Morris County Prosecutor's Office Major Crimes Unit at 973-285-6200 or the Jefferson Township Police Department at 973-697-1300.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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