NEW YORK — Long Island serial killer suspect Rex Heuermann was back in court on Tuesday for the first time since being charged in a fourth murder, as prosecutors shared with his lawyers a mountain of evidence they said they are using against him.
Murder victim Maureen Brainard-Barnes’ sister looked on as the 60-year-old suspect stood with his hands cuffed behind his back in a Suffolk County courtroom in Riverhead.
Heuermann was charged with Brainard-Barnes’ murder last month. The accusation added to murders of three other sex workers also blamed on Heuermann. The three women’s bodies were found along a stretch of beach in Suffolk County more than a dozen years ago.
Heuermann is accused of killing Brainard-Barnes, a Connecticut mom, in 2007 while his wife and children vacationed in Atlantic City. Heuermann has pleaded not guilty to all the charges against him.
Suffolk County DA Ray Tierney said his office was handing over as part of discovery more than three terabytes of data on this case to the defense, including 2,500 pages of reports and nearly 3,000 of the tips from the police department’s logs.
“We still have more material to hand over,” Tierney said. “But we’re continuing to provide that discovery on a rolling basis.”
Heuermann’s lawyer, Michael Brown, said he thinks some of the tips will work in his client’s favor.
“Hopefully we’ll see, and I think we will, that there are significant other suspects here that really weren’t pursued or apprehended in the same way they did with Rex Heuermann,” Brown told reporters. “I think that’s going to be problematic, and I think that will certainly go toward showing that he’s not guilty of these charges.”
Brainard-Barnes was last seen alive on July 9, 2007. Heuermann, a Manhattan architect, had already been accused of killing three young sex workers on Long Island — Melissa Barthelemy, Megan Waterman and Amber Lynn Costello — when Brainard-Barnes’ death was formally added to the list.
In 2010 and 2011, the bodies of 11 people were found on and near Gilgo Beach. Heuermann has not been linked to the other seven victims
Judge Timothy Mazzei set a return conference for April 17.