At approximately 8:45am, New Jersey State Troopers observed a vehicle on the shoulder of the northbound lanes on the Garden State Parkway near mile marker 90 in Ocean County. When a Trooper pulled up behind the vehicle, it fled at a high rate of speed. The trooper gave chase but ended the pursuit for safety reasons. About 75 minutes later, other law enforcement agencies in the area found the driver of the vehicle near her car which was pulled off the side of the road on Route 195 West near exit 31B. She told officers she was with an armed man, prompting a massive search for a person who police later learned was non-existent.
Trooper Castellano was on Route 195 near an exit ramp in Howell Township and was searching for the person described by the female driver. As he conducted the search, he was struck by a passing vehicle. He was taken to a local hospital, where he died from his injuries several hours later.
The female was arrested and faces multiple charges relating to the death of Trooper Castellano, in that she provided false information that prompted an unnecessary search by officers which led to the death of the trooper.
Trooper Castellano had served with the New Jersey State Police for six years and was assigned to Troop C Tactical Patrol Unit. He is survived by his wife and two children.