Cops Confirm New Remains Human; Skull Also Found Along Ocean ParkwayApril 11, 2011
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Police have confirmed that the latest set of bones found Monday morning at Jones Beach State Park are human remains.
Those remains, potentially those of a 9th victim, were discovered near Zach’s Bay at the park, which is about a mile and a half east of the Jones Beach water tower.
Later Monday afternoon, authorities also said that a 10th set of human remains and a human skull may have been discovered at a bird sanctuary off of Ocean Parkway, CBS 2′s Jennifer McLogan reported.
Investigators expanded their search for a serial killer into Nassau County Monday after investigators recovered eight bodies on Suffolk County beaches.
Police and sanitation vehicles blocked off all traffic on Ocean Parkway. A mobile sign advised drivers of a beach search that will shut down the Parkway all day.
About 125 searchers, some with dogs and others on horseback, hit Tobay Beach and Jones Beach State Park to scour the area for evidence.
Police were also searching a nearby 550-acre wildlife preserve and a 30-acre pond. They’re using cherry pickers supplied by the Fire Department to peer above the heavy brush to look for any evidence.
Residents near Gilgo Beach, where the search originated, were shocked by the recent gruesome discoveries.
“To find all these bodies here, we’re shocked. We’re a close community, leave our doors unlocked,” one neighbor said.
None of the four most recently recovered bodies have been identified.
“We have no information on the sex, or age or any other information on the four remains we found,” said Richard Dormer, Suffolk Police Commissioner.
Police, however, have ruled out the remains are those of 24-year-old Shannan Gilbert of Jersey City. She disappeared May 1 after running from a client’s house in Oak Beach.
The initial search for Gilbert back in December led police to the bodies of four women wrapped in burlap, unburied in the thick brush.
All four worked as escorts who advertised on Craigslist and worked in various Nassau hotels.
Police have been troubled by a lack of clues, despite an extensive number of crime scenes to investigate.
Police told CBS 2 they were getting closer to finding the killer, but declined to provide further details.
However, Det. Lt. Kevin Smith told 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera that reports suggesting a suspect may soon be identified and that such a suspect could be in law enforcement are not true.
“For anyone to come out and say that it’s a specific person, a specific occupation, or a specific type is unfair and I think it’s mere suspicion, it’s mere speculation,” Smith said. “Right now, it could be anybody.”
Lawrence Kobilinsky, professor of John Jay College of Criminal Justice, suspects the killer may be familiar with police procedures.
“Either he knows what he’s doing and understands what crime scene investigation is all about or he has just been lucky up until now,” said Kobilinsky. “He is very comfortable working here or else he would never have used this site. He knows this area, knows it is relatively deserted.”
Police Consider That Long Island Escort Killings Could be Work of Ex-CopApril 11, 2011
Authorities reportedly are considering that a former cop or someone familiar with law enforcement procedure is behind the killings of four online escorts whose bodies were found on a remote New York beach.
Police say evidence suggests that whoever dumped the women -- all in their 20s and found wrapped in burlap bags -- is knowledgeable of police investigative tactics and familiar with the area of Long Island where the bodies were found, according to multiple press reports.
Authorities have found a total of eight bodies in thick brush along a remote stretch of parkway between Ocean Beach and Gilgo Beach. The New York Post reports that investigators found a ninth set of remains Monday but Nassau County Police would not confirm that the bones discovered at New York's Jones Beach State Park are human.
A spokeswoman with the Suffolk County Police Department told FoxNews.com that police have not determined whether the four additional bodies found in the last two weeks are linked to the women found in December.
The most recent remains, found several miles away from the escorts, included the body of an infant or child, the New York Post reports, leading police to consider that the bodies were victims of multiple killers.
Police expanded their search for more possible victims into Nassau County on Monday. About 125 searchers, some with dogs and others on horseback, scoured Jones Beach State Park for more possible victims.
Investigators are also exploring possible links to the suspected serial killer who murdered prostitutes in New Jersey, officials have said.
The New York Post and the New York Times, citing unnamed sources, have reported that the killer may be a former cop or someone familiar with law enforcement procedure.
The person believed to be the killer had reportedly made taunting phone calls to the teen sister of victim Melissa Barthelemy shortly after she disappeared in July 2009. The calls were difficult for police to investigate because they were all under three minutes and made from crowded places, like Madison Square Garden and Times Square.
An official with the Suffolk County Police Department would not confirm to FoxNews.com that authorities are eyeing an ex-cop in the investigation.
"We haven’t said if we think it’s someone in law enforcement," the official said.
Criminal profilers say serial killers are often social and would appear to have a normal life with family and friends as opposed to being a loner.
The disappearance of 24-year-old N.J. resident and Craigslist escort Shannan Gilbert led investigators to the Suffolk County beach spot late last year where they found four skeletal bodies of female prostitutes. Four more bodies that have yet to be identified were found when officers returned to the area in the past two weeks, but all eight were found within a three-mile radius on the north side of the parkway.
None of the found victims, however, is Gilbert, whose case remains open.
A Suffolk County investigator who declined to be identified because of the ongoing case told The Associated Press that detectives are taking a methodical approach to finding the suspect, poring over credit card records of the victims to track their movements and where they spent their money in the area, MyFoxNY.com reports.
Cell phone calls made by the women are also being tracked, and computer records of their communications and appointment records have also been viewed.
"These kinds of investigations have to take slow steps; you don't want to jump to conclusions," Katherine Ramsland, a professor of forensic psychology at DeSales University in Center Valley, Pa., and author of "The Human Predator: A Historical Chronicle of Serial Murder and Forensic Investigation," told MyFoxNY.
"They are looking at the evidence to determine what may be similar about the victims, but they also want to look at dissimilarities," she said.
3 More Sets of Human Remains Found on New York Beach
April 04, 2011
Searchers looking for more victims of a suspected serial killer along a remote New York beach area have now found a total of eight sets of human remains.
Suffolk County Police Commissioner Richard Dormer announced Monday that the remains of three more people had been found on Long Island.
A spokeswoman with the Suffolk County Police Department told FoxNews.com that the remains were discovered Monday morning, while searchers climbed fire truck ladders to get aerial views of a dense thicket that stretches for miles along the highway that leads to Jones Beach.. The remains were found in an area between Oak Beach and Gilgo Beach, the spokeswoman said.
Five dead people were found previously along the same stretch of deserted ocean highway, about 45 miles east of New York City.
Authorities discovered the latest set of human remains while searching for missing online escort Shannan Gilbert, though police said later that Gilbert was not among the latest remains found.
Gilbert, 24, of Jersey City, N.J., was last seen May 2010 in a shorefront community nearby. Police searching for her in December discovered the bodies of four women who advertised themselves as escorts on the Craigslist website.
The bodies, all wrapped in burlap bags, were identified as 25-year-old Maureen Brainard-Barnes, of Norwich, Conn.; 24-year-old Melissa Barthelmey, of Bronx, New York; 27-year-old Amber Lynn Costello, of Long Island, N.Y.; and 22-year-old Megan Waterman of Maine. All four women were escorts who advertised themselves on Craigslist.
No suspects have been identified in the deaths of the women.
Police theorize a serial killer may have been responsible for the deaths.
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