11/20/2000

Patrol supervisor remains in mental hospital as wife's murder is investigated

PoliceOne Staff Report
(ROCKLAND COUNTY, N.Y.) -- A Port Authority officer remains in a mental hospital as police investigate the murder of his wife.

Rocco Cuccio, a patrol supervisor at Newark Airport, checked himself into Teaneck's Holy Name Hospital for psychiatric treatment after a jogger found his wife's body strangled on Nov. 10 near Route 304.

"At this point he is not listed specifically as a suspect," Sgt. Steve Morgan told PoliceOne.com. "We're at the early stages of the investigation. We're really trying to streamline the information that we have."

An autopsy report on Janyce Cuccio, who was found a week after her family reported her missing, determined that she had been beaten and strangled with the killer's bare hands, Fredrick Zugibe, Rockland County Medical Examiner told the Bergen Record.

"I cannot rule out all blunt objects," Zugibe told the Record. "But it seems likely, though not definitive, to be the result of fists."

The woman was found to have bleeding on the brain and the strangulation broke some cartilage in her neck, he said.

"Either one could have killed her in itself: the head trauma or the strangulation," Zugibe told the newspaper.

The Cuccios had a history of trouble in their marriage. At one point he was asked by the Port Authority Police to surrender his fire arms when his wife filed a domestic violence complaint, however they were returned when the charges were dropped, the newspaper reported.

"This is just a tragedy of immense proportions," Sgt. Mark O'Neill, president of the Sergeants' Benevolent Association told the Record. "We feel very sorry for her family and the children. We're hoping at the conclusion of the investigation it's going to be something other than what it appears."

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