Former Bergen Catholic Star Wrestler Accused of South Jersey Carjacking

Lukas Iorio has been charged in Manasquan with carjacking, burglary, resisting arrest, assault by auto and criminal mischief.

Lukas Iorio/Gettysburg College website
Lukas Iorio/Gettysburg College website
Written By Tom Davis

A 20-year-old man who was a star wrestler at Bergen Catholic High School was charged with carjacking and other crimes connected to a Sunday incident at the Manasquan beach, police said.

Lukas Iorio of Ridgefield Park was allegedly involved in a serious of wild incidents that led him to be charged with carjacking, burglary, resisting arrest, assault by auto and criminal mischief, police said.

Iorio was a star wrestler who won regional and district titles as a senior at 182 pounds, according to the Gettysburg College website. He placed eighth at the state tournament at 182 pounds in 2012, according to the site.

Manasquan Police Chief Elliott A. Correia provided the following account:

At approximately 8:40 p.m., Thomas Hall and Michael Smith of the Manasquan Beach Patrol were patrolling the beach walk heading south in the area of 401 Beachfront when they were approached by accused.

The two were operating a golf-cart-type vehicle belonging to the Manasquan Beach Department when they allegedly confronted Iorio.

Police and other witnesses said Iorio jumped feet first at the front of the cart, kicked out the plastic windshield and landed in the front seat of the cart.  The accused then allegedly assaulted both and forced them out of the cart. 

Once in control of the cart, Iorio then allegedly headed south towards the Manasquan Inlet, speeding and swerving at pedestrians on the beach walk.  A 49-year old man who twice tried to avoid the cart was struck and injured as the cart passed him. 

When he reached the end of the beach walk at Riverside Drive, Iorio allegedly crashed the cart into the inlet gazebo and then ran from the cart to the bicycle racks, where he apparently attempted to steal a bicycle.

While at the bike racks, the accused was approached by a 53-year old man who attempted to calm him and see if he was okay. Iorio then allegedly assaulted the man by punching him in the back of the head and then fled on foot. 

Ioio reportedly next ran to the backyard of a nearby Beachfront residence and entered the home through an unlocked back door, confronting the occupants inside.  During the confrontation, Iorio allegedly repeatedly punched a 72-year old man in the face and head. 

Iorio was eventually subdued in the house by several family members and the two members of the Beach Patrol who had arrived at the residence in pursuit of the accused.  Upon the arrival of Manasquan Special Officer Mark McGowan, the accused was handcuffed and taken into custody assisted by Patrolman Nicholas Norcia. 

At the scene, the Manasquan First Squad treated five persons injured as a result of the accused’s initial actions and during the confrontation with him in the residence.  One individual later sought further treatment at a medical facility.      

A bail amount totaling $341,000.00 was set by Superior Court Judge Kathleen A. Sheedy. The accused was remanded to the Monmouth County Correctional Institution, Freehold, in lieu of bail. 

The accused was also charged with operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident with personal injury.

Iorio is scheduled for an initial court appearance in Manasquan Municipal Court on June 4, 2014 at 9 a.m. before Judge Paul Capatorto.

At Bergen Catholic, Iorio finished senior season with a record of 38-11, and helped lead the Crusaders to league, sectional, district, and state titles in 2012. He was the team captain, according to the site.

The Gettysburg site identifies him as a member of the college's wrestling team in 2012-13.
JAFO May 28, 2014 at 02:32 PM
I'm going to take a stab in the dark here and say drugs.
Jose Belindo May 28, 2014 at 03:22 PM
asskickinglass May 29, 2014 at 10:31 AM
It is so sad that this boy was never taught the restraint and control required of being a leader or captain. Physical strength without the brains to harness it is useless and dangerous. Add alcohol and drugs, and there goes your future. This boy's life is forever changed because he was made to believe he was a superstar and is now facing the reality that you are responsible for your actions. A lesson he should have been taught much earlier. I hope all the people he terrorized are ok and that this boy makes amends to everyone he hurt.
Mike May 29, 2014 at 11:49 AM
Thank God for the Internet! This story is so bizarre it's already on national news--and it will be on the Internet forever, hopefully haunting this waste for the rest of his life.


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