The Essex County Prosecutor's Office says Dante Cespedes' wife went to the Belleville Police Department to say her husband was physically assaulting her.
Four officers went to their home to arrest Cespedes and serve the 40-year-old with a temporary restraining order.
The prosecutor's office says Cespedes appeared intoxicated and lunged at the officers with two knives. Three officers opened fire and Cespedes was pronounced dead at the scene Tuesday.
Officials are investigating whether the officers were justified in shooting.
Cespedes worked as a relief chef at New York City's Algonquin Hotel. The hotel's general manager told The Star-Ledger of Newark everyone is shocked and saddened.