How Was Rex Heuermann Caught? Gilgo Beach Serial Killer Was Arrested after Cops Found DNA on Pizza Box that Matched with Hair of One of the Victims

Heuermann's arrest is connected to the investigation of the "Gilgo Four," which refers to four women who were found wrapped in burlap within a few days of each other in late 2010.

Rex Heuermann, the alleged Gilgo Beach murderer was arrested after DNA from the hair of one of his victims matched that of his. According to police Heuermann was caught after the hair sample of one of the victims Megan Waterman, taken by investigators from a discarded pizza crust in January matched that of his.

Heuermann, a father-of-two, who happened to be a former classmate of actor Billy Baldwin, was arrested on Thursday evening and arraigned Friday in the deaths of three women. He was arrested from his Manhattan office, more than a decade after 11 bodies were found on Long Island and a year after he came onto officials' radar as a potential suspect.

Caught at Last

Rex Heuermann
Rex Heuermann Twitter

Heuermann is also suspected in the disappearance and death of a fourth woman, according to police. He was arrested after cops had staked out his home on 1st Avenue in Massapequa Park, Long Island, and his office located at 385 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan before apprehending him.

Newly released court documents reveal that on or around January 26, 2023, a surveillance team retrieved a pizza box that had been discarded by Heuermann in a garbage can on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan.

"This pizza box was sent to the Suffolk County Crime Laboratory for analysis, where a swab was taken from the leftover pizza crust," prosecutors wrote.

Approximately three months later, on April 28, a detective personally delivered a section of male hair, which had been preserved as evidence, to the same laboratory where the pizza crust had been analyzed.

The hair was obtained from Megan Waterman, one of the victims in the case.

Then, on or around June 12, 2023, the forensic laboratory conducted a comparison of the mitochondrial DNA extracted from the pizza crust and the hair sample. The results indicated that the DNA profiles were identical, suggesting a match.

Moreover, the analysis concluded that the probability of finding a match to the hair sample among the North American population was extremely low, with only 0.04% of people potentially sharing the same DNA profile.

Rex Heuermann
Rex Heuermann Twitter

"It is significant that (Heuermann) cannot be excluded from the male hair recovered near the 'bottom of the burlap' utilized to restrain and transport Megan Waterman's naked and deceased body," prosecutors wrote.

Prosecutors stated that investigators were initially led to Heuermann after a witness reported seeing a pickup truck similar to the model he owned around the time when one of the victims went missing in 2010.

Additionally, investigators were able to establish further evidence linking Heuermann to the crimes. This included the discovery of burner phones that were used to coordinate meetings with the victims.

Arrested after a Long Chase

Heuermann's arrest is connected to the investigation of the "Gilgo Four," which refers to four women who were found wrapped in burlap within a few days of each other in late 2010. Three of the victims were identified as Melissa Barthelemy, Megan Waterman and Amber Costello, according to the indictment.

Rex Heuermann
Rex Heuermann is suspected of killing at least 10 people on Gilgo Beach more than a decade ago Twitter

Those three women, along with Maureen Brainard-Barnes, were all found in close proximity to one another in 2010 and have been called the "Gilgo Beach Four."

Heuermann is believed to have killed at least 10 people but the arrest does not appear to be directly connected to the other six women who were later considered as potentially related cases, according to a source.

Heuermann made an appearance in court on Friday afternoon and pleaded not guilty to three counts of first-degree murder and additional charges connected to the deaths of three women over a decade ago.

During the court proceedings, Heuermann remained emotionless. Additionally, he was identified as the main suspect in a fourth murder case.

Heuermann is an architect who has been married twice and is currently living in the rundown Long Island house he grew up in. He is also a father, taking care of two children, one of whom has special needs.

Heuermann led a normal life for years before he was busted on Thursday. Detectives say they matched DNA from pizza that the suspect ate to genetic material found on the women's remains. However, his arrest has left his neighbors in shock as they never saw anything suspicious about Heuermann.

On Thursday, the same neighbors in Massapequa Park, including actor Billy Baldwin, were taken aback when they came to know that their Heuermann, was a suspect in the Gilgo Beach murders.

Most of the neighbors described him as a reserved businessman and a "regular family man." Baldwin, 60, who graduated from Berner High School in the class of 1981, tweeted his disbelief at learning that the Gilgo Beach serial killer suspect was a classmate of his.

"Married, two kids, architect. 'Average guy... quiet, family man.' Mind-boggling," the local-born actor wrote.

"Massapequa is in shock."

Raised alongside his brother Craig, the 59-year-old architect grew up in an untidy house built in 1956 on 1st Avenue. Interestingly, this house is located directly across the bay from the area where 11 bodies were discovered between 2010 and onwards.

Asa Ellerup
Rex Heuermann seen in the only photo available of his wife Asa Ellerup Twitter

He bought the house from his mother, Dolores, for $170,000 In 1994, as indicated by property records. That same year, he started his own company, RH Architecture Design, which is located on Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan, where he was arrested on Thursday night.

Neighbors mention that his daughter worked with him at the company, and he is believed to have also raised a son with special needs.

According to neighbors and reports, Heuermann is married to Asa Ellerup, who is said to have Icelandic heritage. Ellerup, 59, is listed as residing in the same Massapequa Park residence. There is a single photo on her Facebook page where Heuermann can be seen looking in her direction.

Not much information is available about Ellerup. According to their next-door neighbor, Etienne DeVilliers, who is a retired New York City firefighter, Ellerup is described as "quiet."

Heuermann was just 26 years old when he got married for the first time in New Brunswick, New Jersey, as mentioned in a wedding announcement from 1990. The announcement features a photo of him wearing glasses and smiling on his wedding day.

His first wife, Elizabeth Ryan, was described as a graduate of St. Peter's High School in New Brunswick and Montclair State College, where she earned a degree in business administration.

At that time, she worked as a junior planner at an office supplies company in New Jersey. Heuermann was still an intern at an architecture firm back then, four years before he established his own company. His brother, Craig, was his best man during the wedding.

Victoria Heuermann
Rex Heuermann's daughter Victoria Heuermann Twitter

Heuermann's 26-year-old daughter, Victoria, was prominently featured as one of the key members of his "team" on his company website until it was taken down shortly after he was identified as a suspect.

In the photo, Victoria can be seen smiling while wearing sunglasses, although her specific role within the company was not mentioned.

Based on her LinkedIn profile, it appears that Victoria had a relatively new position at her father's company. Prior to that, she worked as a sales associate at Macy's and simultaneously pursued her studies at the New York Institute of Technology.