Long Island police are searching the home of suspected serial killer Rex Heuerman to determine if he left behind any ‘trophies’ from his three victims.
Police on Saturday were seen outside the 59-year-old architect’s ‘dungeon’-like Massapequa home with a child-sized blonde doll placed in a large wooden and glass case decorated with flowers.
The creepy doll, adorned with a red bow on top of its head, was one of several items officers dressed in red, hazmat suits, gloves and masks pulled out of the house and loaded into a truck.
“We’re just going through his house, looking for evidence,” a police source told the New York Post. ‘If he had any trophies’ from those whose bodies he dumped on Gilgo Beach.
He now faces three counts of first-degree and second-degree murder in the deaths of Melissa Barthelemy, Megan Waterman and Amber Costello. Authorities say he is the ‘prime suspect’ in another murder.
Heuerman has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Manhattan architect Rex Heuerman, 59, is charged with three murders attributed to the Gilgo Beach serial killer, and is the prime suspect in the killing of a fourth victim.
Investigators were seen removing various items outside Human’s Massapequa home on Saturday as they tried to see if any ‘trophies’ were left behind from his alleged victims.
Neighbors previously said the suspected serial killer was always terrifying, leading some adults to instruct their children to avoid their suburban home.
Now, a criminal profiler who pegged the serial killer as an ‘average Joe’ in 2011 says he is ‘pleased’ to find he was spot-on.
‘When I heard the news yesterday, I had to laugh to myself because it was exactly what I predicted,’ said Scott Bohn, a criminologist, author and serial-killer researcher who has spoken about the Gilgo Beach murders.
Scott Bohn, a criminologist, author and serial-killer researcher who spoke about the Gilgo Beach murders, predicted that the serial killer was an ‘average Joe’
He predicted back in 2011 – when an investigation into a possible serial killer began – that the killer would be ‘someone who can walk into a room and look like your average Joe.’
Boon added that the man would be well-organized and meticulous about his work.
Additionally, he said, the killer was ‘persuasive and logical enough’ to convince his victims to meet him on his terms.
‘Who is more organized, who is more meticulous than someone who studied engineering and architecture?’
Others told The New York Times that the suspect was likely married or in a long-term relationship, well-educated, financially secure with a steady job, owned an expensive car or truck and lived close to where the bodies were found.
At the time of the killing, police said, Heuerman owned a Chevrolet Avalanche.
‘Things about serial killers – at least the ones that are more widespread – are often remarkably common,’ said James Alan Fox, a professor at Northeastern University who has studied serial killers for more than 40 years.
He added that they are very careful not to leave any evidence.
‘They usually have jobs and families and they kill part-time,’ explains Fox. ‘It is not their only activity in life.’
New York State Police are pictured Saturday loading a truck with items from Human’s suburban home
Investigators filled blue bins full of items from the home before loading them into a truck
A New York State Police officer removed a wooden panel while law enforcement searched the home
One item that police said was so large that it required two men to carry it
New York State Police officers move a metal cabinet outside the home
The suspect’s home sits directly north of Gilgo Beach across South Oyster Bay
Those who worked with Heuermann said he was fastidious, impressing some of his clients and annoying others with his attention to detail.
‘(He’s) a gem to deal with, very knowledgeable,’ said Steve Kramberg, a property manager in Brooklyn who worked with Human for 30 years.
She described him as a ‘big goofy guy’ who was ‘a bit on the nerdy side’, revealed as a dedicated worker who was detailed in his work.
According to his website, Heuerman counted American Airlines and the New York City Department of Environmental Protection among his lucrative clients.
But while Kramberg said his rounded availability and attention to detail were a bonus, others were rubbed the wrong way by his animosity.
Paul Tietelbaum, the former board president of a building that hired Heuerman to renovate, said he displayed an attitude: ‘I’m an expert, you’re lucky to have me.’
He added, ‘(He) was a really cold and distant person, kind of creepy.’
Another board member, Kelly Parisi, echoed this when she recalled how the building’s managers eventually fired Heuerman because he was ‘too rude’ and ‘antagonistic with everyone’.
But neighbors saw him differently, with Nicholas Ferchau saying that when he was younger ‘we’d cross the street,’ calling Heuerman ‘someone you don’t want to get close to.’
A crime laboratory officer removed evidence from Heuerman’s home in a small envelope
All items were packaged in blue crates and loaded onto a truck
Drone footage of Heuerman’s home shows police outside the one-story building
Others told Newstimesuk.com they were not surprised to learn of Human’s alleged crimes.
Mike Schmidt, who has lived in the Massapequa Park neighborhood for a decade, said he often visits his friend whose property backs up to Heuerman.
He said that when they drank beer in the backyard, they would look at the house and comment: ‘There’s probably his body over there.’
Schmidt recalls that while children often avoid haunted houses on Halloween, last year she and her friend took their children to the house — purely to satisfy their curiosity and look inside.
She said they were greeted at the door by Heuerman, who surprised the kids with a full candy pumpkin.
However, Schmidt told the Times that his wife was horrified to find out where the candy came from, forcing him to throw it away.
Another resident, Tara Alonzo, recounts a disturbing run-in she had with Heuerman at the Whole Foods where she works in Long Island.
She told Newstimesuk.com that she stole the oranges from the store’s kids club, where parents leave their children while they shop. When he was confronted by staff, he says he replied: ‘If I was wearing a suit like I wear most days, you wouldn’t be talking to me like that.’
He said he then walked out of the store with five or six oranges in hand, leaving staff confused by the ‘strange’ customer.
Those who knew Heuerman have given different descriptions, some seeing him as a successful but troubled Manhattan architect and others as a fearsome loner.
Police have released a laundry list of ‘red flags’ they say led them to Heuerman as a suspect, with the first piece of evidence linking a Chevrolet Avalanche he owned and Costello’s killing to a witness.
According to documents filed in Suffolk County Court, investigators were able to link that vehicle to Heumann’s cellphone records, which linked him to locations related to the murder, which ultimately led to a DNA sample.
Police say Heuerman used Melissa Barthelemy’s phone to make harassing calls to her family from the victim’s phone, with the calls being made from his Manhattan office.
After Heuerman was identified as the owner of the Chevrolet, police issued more than 300 subpoenas, search warrants and other legal processes to obtain more evidence.
After the decades-long hunt for the killer seemingly ended this week, dramatic aerial footage revealed a forensic search of his property as authorities continue to try to link him to more unsolved murders.
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