Alleged Gilgo Beach killer charged with two additional murders linked to remains found on East End

Alleged Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex A. Heuermann was indicted Thursday morning on two counts of second degree murder for the killing of two women: the July 2003 death of Jessica Taylor, whose partial remains were found in Manorville, and Sandra Costilla, whose body was found in Southampton more than 30 years ago.

Mr. Heuermann, 60, of Massapequa Park, pleaded not guilty at his arraignment in Riverhead Thursday before State Supreme Court Justice Timothy Mazzei for the deaths of Ms. Taylor and Ms. Costilla. The latest charges expand the timeline of Mr. Heuermann’s alleged killings to nearly 17 years, and widen the radius of where he allegedly dumped remains by more than 40 miles. Mr. Heuermann was charged for the deaths of Melissa Barthelemy, Amber Costello and Megan Waterman last July. In January, he was charged for the killing of Maureen Brainard-Barnes. The remains of those four women were recovered along Ocean Parkway near Gilgo Beach between the fall of 2010 and spring of 2011. The time of their deaths range from July 2007 to September 2010.

Dozens of reporters from national and international news outlets crowded into a press conference following Mr. Heuermann’s arraignment, during which Suffolk County District Attorney Raymond A. Tierney stood alongside law enforcement personnel from the county police and sheriff’s departments, New York State Police and the FBI, all of which participated in the decade’s Gilgo Beach investigation that has intensified in recent months.

Despite the completion of the grand jury case involving the initial “Gilgo four,” law enforcement officials had pledged to continue investigating. “At that time, we said that we were going to continue to investigate this case, that the grand jury with regard to the ‘Gilgo four’ is over, but the case continues, criminal prosecution continues, the investigation continues,” Mr. Tierney said. “The investigation has been expanded to the bodies that were found on Gilgo and beyond. That’s what we said, and I think that has come to fruition today with these two new charges.”

The evidence linking Mr. Heuermann, a Manhattan architect, to the death of Ms. Taylor includes a male human hair discovered on a surgical drape found beneath her remains, eyewitness accounts of dark-colored Chevrolet pickup truck near the site of Ms. Taylor’s dismembered body that match a 2002 Chevrolet Avalanche pickup truck Mr. Heuermann purchased and phone records.

In April, Gilgo Beach Task Force investigators along with K-9 units searched a densely wooded portion of Manorville where the partial remains of Ms. Taylor were discovered in 2003. Thursday morning, Mr. Tierney referred to the recent search of the “area of interest” as a “necessary investigative step.”

Two months ago, police also searched a wooded area in Southampton where Ms. Costilla’s body was found. Law enforcement originally suspected Ms. Costilla’s death was related to the murders of two other women, Colleen McNamee and Rita Tangredi. John Bittrolff is currently serving a 50-years-to-life prison sentence for the murders of those women, but was never charged with Ms. Costilla’s death. A recent DNA analysis of a male hair found on Ms. Costilla’s body excluded 99.96% of North America’s population as its source, but not Mr. Heuermann. A similar analysis in 2014 excluded Mr. Bittrolff as the source of the DNA evidence.

A handful of family members of Mr. Heuermann’s alleged victims attended the press conference Thursday. Attorney Gloria Allred, who is representing the families of some of the Gilgo victims, read a statement prepared by Ms. Taylor’s mother, Elizabeth Baczkiel.

“Jessica was loving and compassionate and so funny,” Ms. Allred read. “She loved to make people laugh; she could always make people laugh. She tried very hard in school … I miss how she called me ‘Mommy’ and ‘Mama.’ It’s a tragedy she never had children. Jessica would have made a great mother. She loved kids and loved working with them. She worked in the inner city with the kids in summer camp as an aide. She loved supporting kids and helping to take care of them.”

Following Ms. Baczkiel’s statement, Ms. Taylor’s cousin, Jasmine Robinson also spoke.

“This year has been 21 years since she was taken from us, longer than the chance that she got to be alive,” Ms. Robinson said. “I can’t express what this day means, after waiting and hoping for answers. I’m incredibly grateful to the entire task force for the dedication and integrity that they have provided and put into this investigation. I have full faith that they will continue to provide answers for other victims and their families.”

In a bail application released Thursday morning, prosecutors for the first time linked the killing of Valerie Mack, whose remains were also found both near Gilgo Beach and in Manorville, to Mr. Heuermann. The court document outlines the task force’s digital discoveries, including a word document labeled “HK2002-04,” which the Gilgo Beach Task Force considers Mr. Heuermann’s blueprint to “plan out” his “kills.” The word document features the phrases “DS-1, Mill Rd.” and “DS-2, ??????” under a heading labeled “DS” which is thought to be an “acronym for ‘dump site,’” according to the court document. Partial remains of both Ms. Taylor and Ms. Mack were discovered in “the vicinity of Mill Road” in Manorville and along Ocean Parkway near Gilgo Beach.

During Thursday’s press conference, Mr. Tierney said it would be “fair to say,” Mr. Heuermann is a suspect in Ms. Mack’s death, but he is not facing charges in her killing at this time.

Following the press conference, Mr. Heuermann’s defense attorney, Michael J. Brown, said his client was “horrified” by the new charges related to his alleged fifth and sixth victims. The attorney added that he only learned of the suspected planning document and other new discoveries yesterday morning, and said he must “explore and examine the evidence.”

Mr. Heuermann’s next court appearance is scheduled for July 30.

“It’s two additional murder charges, the allegations were obviously very disturbing today,” Mr. Brown said. “But I haven’t seen anything. We’ll do the best to review it and prepare a defense.”