Rex Heuermann, the New York architect accused of slaying at least three women found near Long Island’s Gilgo Beach, revealed Wednesday that he is spending hours a day reviewing the grisly case from his jail cell.
“I’ve been averaging two to three hours a day,” Heuermann, who was handcuffed behind his back, told Judge Timothy Mazzei on Wednesday, according to PIX11. “I’m allowed up to four hours.”
The admission was the only time Heumermann spoke during his brief status hearing on his upcoming trial for the 2009 and 2010 murders of Megan Waterman, Melissa Barthelemy, and Amber Costello. Heuermann, who has pleaded not guilty to all charges against him, also remains the prime suspect in the murder of Maureen Brainard-Barnes, who went missing in July 2007.
All four women, who were working as escorts, were found close together in a case now known as the “Gilgo Four.” Investigators say the women were among at least 11 bodies that were found along the shore between 2010 and 2011.
Since Heuermann’s arrest, the investigation has escalated to involve officials in several other states and extensive searches of the architect’s home in Massapequa Park and a nearby storage unit. Prosecutors said on Wednesday that the investigation into the other bodies is ongoing.
During the hearing, prosecutors revealed that they had already handed the defense team over 10 terabytes of information related to the years-long investigation. On Wednesday, prosecutors also handed over an additional 5,000 pages of evidence related to two of the victims, police memo books from Heuermann’s home, and video surveillance.
The new discovery also included DNA evidence from a cheek swab taken from Heuermann last month, which they said matched DNA found in a pizza box that was instrumental in his July arrest. The DNA was found on a pizza crust in the discarded box outside of Heuermann's Manhattan office. Previously, prosecutors said that the DNA in the box also matched a hair found on Waterman in 2010.
“The buccal swab erases all doubt,” Suffolk District Attorney Ray Tierney said during the hearing.