Gilgo Beach murder suspect's pizza crust DNA matches swab: prosecutor

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, September 27, 2023
Gilgo Beach murder suspect's pizza crust DNA matches swab: prosecutor
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Alleged Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex Heuermann appeared in court on Long Island Wednesday. Kristin Thorne has the latest.

SUFFOLK COUNTY, New York (WABC) -- Accused Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex Heuermann appeared in court Wednesday morning for a pre-trial conference.

Rex Heuermann stood before the judge for only about five minutes as lawyers brought the judge up to date on evidence that has been submitted and will be submitted to Heuermann's attorney, Michael Brown.

Prosecutors say it's going to take a while.

"You don't take a 13-year investigation and turn it over in a day or two," Tierney said. "It's just a voluminous amount of stuff and we're providing it on a rolling basis."

Prosecutors revealed in court that a cheek swab taken from Heuermann matches DNA found on pizza crust disposed of by Heuermann outside his office in Midtown.

That pizza crust DNA, prosecutors say, is consistent with the DNA profile from a hair follicle found on the burlap material used to bind Gilgo Beach victim Megan Waterman.

"We were very confident this was going to be the case," Tierney said. "The way the case is unfolding is consistent with our expectations."

But Heuermann's attorney says not so fast, that none of this means definitely that the hair found on Waterman belongs to Heuermann.

"It's still a significant amount of people that could be the source of this hair," he said.

Brown says 99% of the evidence he's received from prosecutors up to this point are videos, some of which include videos from cameras posted by police outside Heuermann's home in Massapequa Park.

"What the pole cameras show a guy who gets up in the morning, hanging out on his porch," Brown said.

Also during the pre-trial conference Wednesday, the judge ruled on a motion filed by prosecutors to have Heuermann's guns transferred to Nassau County.

More than 200 guns were discovered when investigators searched Heuermann's home this summer, and he could face gun charges if they are deemed to be illegal.

Heuermann's estranged wife was attempting to have the guns returned to her.

"Hes doing the best he can," Brown said of Heuermann. "He was completely shocked. He didn't know why he was taken into custody."

Brown denied that his client is a "monster of a person."

"When he was arrested, there was a video in the actual police vehicle. My client, unless he is a tremendous actor, he was complete shocked. Had no idea why he was being taken into custody. The government doesn't tell you these things, but these things we will bring out in the course of a trial," Heuermann said.

Tierney said they are investigating Heuermann's possible role in other deaths outside of those commonly referred to as the "Gilgo Four."

"We said that initially our investigation centered around the Gilgo Four. We were prepared to bring charges out of three of the four victims. We are working on the fourth and now we have expanded our investigation to include other bodies that were recovered in that area. We will speak aout that when and if we are prepared to bring charges," he said.

The Gilgo Beach murders have mystified both civilians and investigators for two decades. Heuermann was arrested on July 13, and became the first person to be charged in connection with the murders.

Since 1998, 11 bodies have been found on or near Gilgo Beach on Long Island. The "Gilgo Four" are four petite sex workers in their 20s who were found on the beach wrapped in burlap within a mile of each other. Heuermann has been charged in three of the murders and is the prime suspect in the fourth.

He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

ALSO READ: Gilgo Beach murders: Complete timeline of events leading up to Rex Heuermann's arrest


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