Roadside mystery in young woman's death

October 12, 2011 8:11:07 PM PDT
The night a young woman's body was found on the side of the road is full of twists and turns and has left her parents looking for answers.

On the last night of Mary Macaluso's life, she was on a first date at a nightclub in Sayreville.

When she and her date went to leave, his car wouldn't start, so they called a tow truck, and that's when the trouble began.

Roger and Laurie Macaluso are reading through their daughter's journal, including an entry from the day she died.

"She was so happy and this happened," said Roger Macaluso, Mary's father.

The body of 26-year-old Mary Macaluso was found on the side of Route 18 North early Sunday morning by an off-duty police officer.

The Macalusos have already endured so much, their 7-year-old son was killed when he was hit by a car in 1997.

"This is my second death, my last child, I have no children, I have nothing left," said Laurie Macaluso, Mary's mother.

Saturday night, Mary was on a first date in Sayreville when her date's car wouldn't start.

They called for a tow truck and 21-year-old Dexter Jeanty of Brooklyn showed up.

"She called me first and then she made a deal with the tow truck driver and he was supposed to take her home but it didn't turn out that way," Laurie Macaluso said.

Instead, Mary's parents say Jeanty took a strange route, driving from Sayreville all the way down to Neptune to drop off Mary's date first, and then heading north on Route 18 back towards her home in Keansburg.

Investigators are releasing little information about what happened next, other than to say she somehow left the tow truck and wound up on the side of the highway, dead.

"She was very trusting, she didn't believe anyone would hurt her," Macaluso said.

Police have charged Jeanty with leaving the scene of a fatal accident, for failing to stop or to call for help.

But they have not said anything to explain why Macaluso jumped, or fell, out of the tow truck.

"Very kind hearted, loving person, a true miracle," Macaluso said.

Mary Macaluso had just gone back to college, she was studying to be an accountant.