Police: Rutherford female left in ‘grave’ condition after kidnapping
RUTHERFORD (Dec. 2, 2010) — A violent car chase that began in Rutherford and ended in Passaic has left a 30-year-old Rutherford female in “extremely grave condition” with a broken neck and spinal injuries, according to Clifton Detective Capt. Robert Rowan. The serious injury was the end result of a kidnapping, multi-town chase and horrific accident on Route 21, police said.
At 9:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 1, the Clifton Police Department received a call from the unidentified female from Rutherford. She called on her cell phone, telling the dispatcher that her boyfriend had abducted her and was “driving her to the woods,” according to the authorities. The victim indicated to the dispatcher that she was concerned about what her boyfriend might do to her.
To mask the conversation from the violent suspect, later identified as 34-year-old Gerald Eulo of Lyndhurst, the victim reportedly pretended she was talking with her mother. Eventually, she left her cell phone open so the dispatcher could hear the conversation in the car.
On Route 21, Clifton officers Gene Hayes and Allen Fiorilla identified the car — a 1996 Ford pickup truck, reportedly stolen from Rutherford on Tuesday, Nov. 30 — and turned on their sirens. As the police turned on the sirens, they could hear the sirens through the phone call with the dispatcher. “They knew it was the right car,” Rowan said.
The officers tried pulling over the vehicle, but Eulo allegedly took off, heading in the direction of Newark. The suspect exited Route 21 South at Exit 8 in Nutley. He then proceeded to drive through the streets of Nutley and Belleville, before getting back on Route 21, this time northbound. As more police showed up — from Rutherford, Nutley, Passaic and the State Police — Eulo began ramming the police cars on the highway, Rowan added.
Eventually, Eulo blew out a tire and drove for a while on the rim, causing sparks and debris to fly off. Between exits 12 and 13 in Passaic, the suspect allegedly lost control of the vehicle and crashed into a truck. The accident “gravely injured” his passenger, the Rutherford female who made the initial 911 call. Eulo received minor injuries.
Officers rushed in to arrest the Lyndhurst resident, but he allegedly put up a struggle. The 6-foot-6-six inch, 235-pound man resisted arrest, Rowan said. In the fracas, Clifton Detective Steve Berge got injured. Eulo, Berge and the victim were all taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Paterson.
Eulo was released and turned over to the Rutherford Police Department. Charges, including kidnapping, are likely pending. In Clifton, Eulo will face charges of aggravated assault, eluding the police, resisting arrest and possession of a stolen vehicle, Rowan said.
Rowan estimated that the entire ordeal from the first 911 call to the time of apprehension took 15 minutes.
The victim underwent surgery Thursday, Dec. 2.