Attorneys for suspected Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex Heuermann opposed prosecutors’ request for a DNA swab from their client.
Danielle Coysh, part of Mr. Heuermann’s legal defense team, contended in a recent court filing that authorities have not provided sufficient evidence of reasonable cause linking the 59-year-old licensed architect to the killings of three women.
Last month, Mr. Heuermann was indicted on three charges of first-degree murder involving the killings of Megan Waterman, Melissa Barthelemy, and Amber Costello – whose bodies were all discovered near Gilgo Beach, on Long Island. The defendant is also the main suspect in the death of Maureen Brainard-Barnes, who was among the “Gilgo Four” group of women who were last seen alive in New York City at the beginning of June 2007.
All four of the women were sex workers who disappeared after going to meet a client. Their bodies were discovered in December 2010 within a quarter-mile of one another. Some of the victims were shrouded in burlap, and they were discovered restrained with tape or belts.
Prosecutors from Suffolk County had requested a cheek swab from Mr. Heuermann last week in order to perform DNA testing and match it to evidence already collected from a discarded pizza crust. The fresh DNA swab might be used to compare a hair sample discovered on a burlap bag used to “restrain and transport” Waterman’s remains to a DNA profile created from the pizza crust and napkin.
Mr. Heuermann entered a not guilty plea for the three murders. Although no charges have been brought against him for the fourth murder, the inquiry “is anticipated to be concluded shortly,” the prosecutors stated.
“The people essentially concede that they have no evidence establishing the defendant Rex A. Heuermann actually ever came into contact with the pizza crust or used napkin found in the discarded pizza box,” Ms. Coysh wrote. “Thus, by the people’s own admission, the nexus between the partially eaten pizza crust and used napkin and the defendant Rex A. Heuermann is at best a matter of conjecture and assumption, not fact.”