Suspected Long Island Serial Killer Arrested

Architect Rex Heuermann linked to bodies found along Ocean Parkway in 2010: reports
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 14, 2023 9:29 AM CDT
Suspected Long Island Serial Killer Is Nabbed
In this 2011 file photo, searchers, lower left, dig in a marsh area just east of Oak Beach, NY, for the remains of Shannan Gilbert, who went missing after meeting a client of a sexual encounter in May 2010.   (AP Photo/Kevin P. Coughlin, File)

The Long Island serial killer has allegedly been found. Police in New York's Suffolk County have arrested a man allegedly tied to the Gilgo Beach murders on Long Island, which have stumped law enforcement for more than a decade. Authorities have found 11 sets of remains along Ocean Parkway since 2010. However, the suspect expected to appear before a judge Friday morning is only linked to four of those, reports the New York Post. More:

  • News 12 identifies him as Rex Heuermann of Massapequa Park, where a huge police presence was observed Friday. He's a New York City architect with clients including American Airlines and Catholic Charities, per the Post.
  • Police believe he is tied to the "Gilgo Four," whose bodies were the first to be found in December 2010, the Post reports. Authorities were searching for missing sex worker Shannan Gilbert when they discovered a woman's body wrapped in burlap.
  • Within days, they found the bodies of three more women—all "whole, wrapped in burlap about one-tenth of a mile apart from each other," per the Post.

  • The women were identified as Melissa Barthelemy, 24; Megan Waterman, 22; Amber Lynn Costello, 27; and Maureen Brainard-Barnes, 25. All worked as "online escorts," per People. Brainard-Barnes had vanished in 2007, Barthelemy in 2009, and Waterman and Costello in 2010, per CBS News.
  • Police continued searching the area, eventually finding the remains of Gilbert and three other women, along with a young female child of one of the women, and an unidentified male or transgender woman. Partial remains of two of the women had been found 40 miles away in Manorville in the early 2000s.
  • Early on, authorities raised the possibility of two killers, but later revised that theory, saying they suspected a single culprit.

  • Last year, police released audio of Gilbert's 911 call, in which she claimed someone was trying to kill her. But officers said "the prevailing opinion of Shannan's death, while tragic, was not murder and most likely not criminal," per CBS.
  • Shortly after he was named Suffolk County Police commissioner, Rodney Harrison created the Gilgo Beach Homicide Investigation Task Force in February 2022. "Identifying the person or people responsible for these murders is a top priority," he said at the time.
  • Suffolk County authorities will be joined by members of the FBI and New York State Police for a press conference scheduled for 4pm Friday, per News 12.
(More Long Island serial killer stories.)

Get breaking news in your inbox.
What you need to know, as soon as we know it.
Sign up
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.