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Trooper Philip Joseph Lamonaco | New Jersey State Police, New Jersey New Jersey State Police, New Jersey

Trooper

Philip Joseph Lamonaco

New Jersey State Police, New Jersey

End of Watch: Monday, December 21, 1981

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 32

Tour: 11 years

Badge # 2663

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Handgun; 9 mm

Offender: Two sentenced to death

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Trooper Philip Lamonaco was shot and killed during a traffic stop in Knowlton Township.

The incident occurred when he stopped two members of a radical environmental group, known as the United Freedom Front, on I-80. The suspects robbed banks to fund their radical operations which included bombing energy sites.

Several suspects were apprehended and two of them were sentenced to death for Trooper Lamonaco's murder. A third suspect was sentenced to 30 years in prison on federal charges. He was also sentenced to life on state charges, which will start when he is released from federal custody.

On July 19, 1983, Lieutenant Lester Pagano was killed in an automobile accident while investigating Trooper Lamonaco's murder. Lieutenant Pagano had finished following up on leads in reference to the case when the accident occurred.

Trooper Lamonaco had been employed with the New Jersey State Police for 11 years. He is survived by his wife and three children.

A seven mile portion of I-80 was renamed and dedicated in Trooper Lamonaco's memory.

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Related Line of Duty Deaths

Lieutenant Lester Amos Pagano
New Jersey State Police, New Jersey
End of Watch: Tuesday, July 19, 1983
Cause: Automobile crash

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Most Recent Reflection

I attended the funeral for Trooper Lamonaco and will always remember his young children sitting in the front row at the funeral home. Having two children of my own, I
could not even imagine the pain that family was enduring that day. Every year since, members of the Cedar Grove PD
visit the site along Rt 80 and place a Christmas wreath.
Trooper Lamonaco was out gunned that day. As a result, many police departments switched from revolvers to automatic hand guns (including Cedar Grove PD).
God bless the Lamonaco family and all law enforcement families throughout the USA. Have a safe and happy holiday season.

Lt Russell Van Zile (Retired)
Cedar Grove Police Dept.
November 21, 2017

 

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