Crime and Courts
Chief investigative reporter Jonathan Dienst on crime, corruption and terrorism.

New Jersey Suspect in Mystifying Quadruple Family Murder Case to Be Tried as an Adult

The motive still remains a mystery; prosecutors once said he went from room to room to find his victims: his parents, sister and a friend

What to Know

  • An 18-year-old NJ man who allegedly killed four family members in their home on Dec. 31, 2017 will be charged as an adult
  • Prosecutors said Friday that Scott Kologi, who was 16 when the victims died, was charged with four counts of first-degree murder
  • The motive still remains a mystery; an attorney for Kologi says he and his client will be in court Wednesday to enter a plea of not guilty

The then-16-year-old New Jersey boy who allegedly shot and killed his parents, sister and a family friend on New Year's Eve two years ago -- a heinous crime that has since befuddled investigators and the public -- has been charged with four counts of first-degree murder, prosecutors announced Friday. 

Scott Kologi, now 18, will be charged as an adult in the Dec. 31, 2017 killings of his mother, father, sister and the family friend, whom Monmouth County prosecutors referred to as "grandmother" in a statement. The move comes after a judge granted prosecutors' motion earlier this week to move Kologi's case from family court so he could be prosecuted as an adult to the full extent of the law.

An attorney for Kologi, Richard Lomurro, told News 4 he and his client would appear in court on Wednesday to enter a plea of not guilty. Lomurro said Kologi's legal team was disappointed the judge granted prosecutors' motion to move the case out of juvenile court, referencing a heavily litigated process that included "extensive" expert reports and testimony. But, he added, the judge's decision was not unusual, given it was a 16-year-old charged with a violent crime. 

Kologi, of Long Branch, faces a minimum sentence of 30 years in state prison without parole for each of the four counts of first-degree murder. 

He allegedly shot all four victims -- Steven and Linda Kologi, 44 and 42 respectively, 18-year-old Brittany Kologi, and 70-year-old Mary Schultz, who lived in the home, multiple times just before the Times Square ball dropped to ring in 2018. No possible motive has ever been revealed.

Prosecutors initially said Kologi allegedly went room to room to find his victims. A brother, grandfather and another family friend heard the shots and ran. They escaped unharmed.

Prosecutors have said the semi-automatic rifle used in the killings was legally owned by someone in the home, but have provided no other details.

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