Man Reported Missing From Work Found Stabbed, Beaten

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Raritan Police Department
    Gary Passerelli

    When John Niko didn't show up for work on Friday, his co-workers were worried enough to call police. Niko, 35, was a managing partner for eSOZO Computer and  Networking Services is Flemington, New Jersey.

    When police went to Niko's townhouse, in Rairtan Townshhip, Hunterdon County, N.J., they found him dead inside. He'd been stabbed and beaten to death, according to proseuctor Anthony P. Kearns, III.

    "An autopsy by the Hunterdon County Medical Examiner determined the principal cause of death as blunt force trauma to the head and chest and listed multiple stab wounds as the secondary cause," Kearns said.

    A long-time friend of Niko's is charged with the crime. 39-year-old Gary Passarelli of North Plainfield was arraigned Monday. His bail has been set at $1 million. Police are not talking at this point about the nature of the relationship between the two men, except to say that they've known each other for a long time.

    "Details about a possible motive and any weapon used is not being released at this time. We can confirm that Mr. Niko and Mr. Passarelli had known each other for a long time," Kearns said.

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