Rex Heuermann Indicted in Connection with Fourth Murder
Rex Heuermann, who was charged in July as the Gilgo Beach serial killer, has been indicted Tuesday morning for a fourth murder. Heuermann, 60, was previously charged in the killings of three of the four women found bound in 2010 on the Long Island oceanfront.
Prosecutors called Heuermann the prime suspect in the murder of Maureen Brainard-Barnes, the first of the so-called Gilgo Four to vanish. Charges in her killing were delayed pending DNA test results on a hair recovered from her remains. The grand jury finally returned a murder indictment in connection with her death.
Heuermann Pleads Not Guilty to All Charges
In a Suffolk County courtroom, Heuermann pleaded not guilty to all charges. The DNA tests showed that the hair found on the crime scene belonged to Heuermann’s wife, Asa Ellerup, and was likely tracked by him. Prosecutors claim that Ellerup, who has not been charged in the Gilgo Beach case, was out of town during the disappearances of the women, whom Heuermann hired as escorts and then killed.
Court papers filed on Tuesday provided additional details that further support prosecutors’ claims. The papers indicated that DNA evidence connects Heuermann to all four victims and that he attempted to erase online interactions with escorts using software to cover his tracks.
Evidence Against Heuermann
Investigators revealed several pieces of evidence linking Heuermann to the murders. He made numerous calls and texts to Maureen Brainard-Barnes just before her disappearance. Prosecutors also have records of internet searches he made and mobile phone location data that corresponds to his home and office.
The DNA evidence includes stray hairs found on the bodies that belonged to Heuermann’s wife, as well as a male hair that matches a genetic sample taken from pizza crusts discarded by Heuermann. This evidence strengthens the case against him.
Defense Claims and Ongoing Investigations
Heuermann’s lawyer, Michael Brown, stated that his client maintains his innocence and looks forward to fighting the charges. Brown cited weaknesses in the DNA testing used by investigators, arguing that Heuermann could be among thousands of suspects.
After the discovery of the four women’s bodies in 2010, six more sets of remains were found. Investigations are still ongoing regarding the circumstances of those deaths.
Read More of this Story at www.nytimes.com – 2024-01-16 16:00:04
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