Suffolk Co. continues search for human remains in Gilgo Beach murders, expands investigation area

Chanteé Lans Image
Tuesday, April 30, 2024
Long Island police continue search for remains in Gilgo Beach murders investigation
Chantee Lans has the latest details on the search for human remains in the Gilgo Beach murders investigation.

SUFFOLK COUNTY, New York (WABC) -- The search for possible human remains continues as Suffolk County Police canine walk the median grass and along the shoulder of Route 24 in Calverton, not too far from the Long Island Expressway.

Sources confirm to Eyewitness News that this search is tied to the Gilgo Beach murders investigation. However, Suffolk County District Attorney Ray Tierney did not confirm at a press conference on Monday if the search is tied to the murders.

"I haven't said anything and the people on my team haven't said anything. So, really you can speculate all you want," Tierney said.

The weeklong search involved K9 officers souring forestland mostly in Manorville, where the partial remains of two Gilgo Beach murder victims, Valerie Mack and Jessica Taylor, were found in the early 2000s.

No arrests were ever made in their cases.

On Friday, the search extended to North Sea, where 28-year-old Sandra Costilla was found dead in 1993.

Convicted killer, John Bittrolff of Manorville, was long suspected but never charged.

The husband and father was convicted in 2017 in the murders of two other women, whose bodies were found in 1993 and 1994, in East Patchogue and Shirley, respectively.

Rex Heuermann, an architect from Massapequa Park, was charged in four other Gilgo Beach homicide cases.

None of his alleged victims had remains in Manorville. The DA declined to discuss Heuermann's case, only giving limited details on the search.

"We're going to wait until we get that evidence, we're going to look at that evidence, and if we act and indict, we'll have another one of these and we'll explain to you what we have," Tierney said.

Aside from the search in the woods and along the roadway median, Eyewitness News spotted officers entering a private property, and followed Suffolk County Police and the NYPD as they approached a gun range in Calverton.

Though Eyewitness News was turned away, a gun range employee confirmed that police are searching in and around the property, and that they have nothing to do with the investigation.

"It is surprising. It's kind of shocking," said Michael Thompson, a neighbor.

Thompson's property butts against the police's shoulder search on Route 24.

"My wife is concerned because she was saying we need to lock the doors and make sure everything is safe, so it's definitely some concern with our family and probably most of the neighbors too," Thompson said.

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