Police in New York arrested James Rackover, the son of a celebrity jeweler Jeffrey Rackover, and an accomplice Lawrence Dilione, Thursday for the savage stabbing death of a Connecticut man, Joseph Comunale whose remains was found in a suitcase buried in a shallow marshy grave in New Jersey.
Police also arrested a second suspect: Lawrence Dilione, 28, of Jersey City, N.J., who faced the same charges plus an additional charge of hindering prosecution, police said. Both suspects hired lawyers and refused to cooperate with investigators, sources say.
NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said Rackover’s blood-spattered E. 59th St. home provided damning proof, as police recovered 32 pieces of evidence from the gory crime scene.
Comunal, 26, of Stamford, Conn., was stabbed 15 times inside the luxury 36-story building before his body was driven to New Jersey and dumped behind a florist shop.
The killers also attempted to burn his body after dousing the victim with gasoline, said Boyce. Comunal also suffered a broken pelvis, leading to speculation that his killers tossed the body from the third-floor apartment.
Rackover was held at the 13th Precinct after his Tuesday night arrest for driving with a suspended license until his arrest.
Along with being charged with murder, Dilione also being charged with concealment of a human corpse and tampering with physical evidence. Police brought the charges against Rackover and Dilione, a New Jersey business owner after the latter led police to where the body was buried, just minutes away from his business offices in Oceanport, Jersey Shore.
Investigators found the remains of Joseph Comunale, buried in a shallow grave in a desolate area behind an Oceanport, N.J., florist. His knife bludgeoned, mutilated body was stuffed in a suitcase in New Jersey, law enforcement sources confirmed. He had been stabbed 15 times and suffered a broken hip.
The Suspect was said to have taken the dead body from New York to New Jersey inside his Mercedes-Benz, after the killers had first tried to burn the body, sources said.
Investigators found missing Stanford Connecticut man Joseph Comunale, 26, dead and buried in a wooded area on the Jersey Shore. He was reported missing, Sunday by his dad after he failed to return from partying in Manhattan, NY
Comunale, 26, from Stamford, Ct., joined two men from New Jersey and three other women who were visiting the son of a well-known jeweler who lives in the Grand Sutton tower, disappeared after a Manhattan party and when his father reported him missing, it sparked of a missing person’s search.
A cadaver dog picked up the scent of the Hofstra University student before the body, beneath about two feet of fresh dirt, was uncovered, the sources indicated. Investigators had previously recovered his pants along with bloody sheets stuffed inside a garbage bag near the apartment building.
Comunale who disappeared after popping into the East Side apartment party late Saturday. He was last seen on video re-entering the building around 7:30 a.m. Sunday. Although no charges were filed, sources indicate police were looking at James Rackover, son of Jeffrey Rackover, jeweler to A-list stars like Jennifer Lopez and Natasha Bedingfield.
He was reported missing by his father a day later. Sources said there was a 911 call on Sunday night reporting unspecified suspicious activity at the building.
Cops said “several people” were brought in for questions, including one uncooperative person of interest in the death. No arrests were yet made.
The Stamford, Conn., man was with two New Jersey men and three women at the home inside the Grand Sutton tower on E. 59th St. and First Ave.
Initially the party host was not identified, but sources said the guests came to hang out with the son of a well-known jeweler who lives in the building. In the latest update however, police reportedly are looking at 25-year-old James Rackover, as a person of interest.
Comunale reportedly did not know the host of the party, and had only met him that night. Authorities continue to question the two individuals as it now acts on a search warrant to search Rackover’s apartment.
James Rackover who describes himself on Facebook as Broker at Lloyd’s of London who studied at Florida State University has been on the unrelated charge of ‘aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle’ remained in custody after police found traces of Comunale’s blood in his condo along with that of a luggage cart that he [Rackover] was seen using Sunday evening.
James Rackover scion of jewelry dynasty, reportedly started acting shady after his party guests left
Joseph Comunale, cops found traces of his blood in Rackover’s condo along with that of a luggage cart that Rackover was seen using Sunday evening.
He reportedly, was observed Sunday evening after his guests had left rolling out two suitcases out of the building. Rackover used the cart came after the host asked how long surveillance video tape in the building’s foyer remained before being ‘discarded.’
The body was found in a suitcase, buried in a shallow marshland grave in New in Oceanport, N.J
Discovery of the body came after one of the two individuals taken into custody led police to where the remains of Joseph Comunale was buried.
Police sources said the party host called down to the front desk requesting a luggage cart around 6:30 p.m., with video surveillance capturing the man rolling two pieces of luggage out of the building.