The number of orange arrows spray painted on Ocean Parkway is increasing, as the search along the brush and thicket of the highway keeps turning up more bodies, and enters day three. As of Wednesday morning, eight bodies have been found in a 7-mile area on the north side of the parkway, the orange arrows pointing to the areas where each was found.
Police are still looking for Shannan Gilbert, a New Jersey woman who disappeared in May 2010 just a few miles away from where the eight bodies were found. Investigators say Gilbert is not among these eight bodies, and they have not yet released the sex of the last four unidentified.
“I’m just shocked,” Sherre Gilbert told the Associated Press after learning from detectives that her sister was not among three sets of remains found when the 7.5-mile sweep began Monday. “I am still hoping for the best outcome.”
Gilbert was last seen screaming and running into the brush after meeting a client in Oak Beach on May 1, 2010. A neighbor said he soon after saw a man in an SUV looking for Gilbert, who met the client on Craiglist—the same website as the initial four victims.
Detectives have interviewed the client but not named him as a suspect, nor have they announced any other possible suspects.
Going by the dates when the identified victims disappeared, this killer has been on, at least, a 4-year killing spree, targeting escorts and sex workers.
The cause of death for all four identified victims is officially listed as homicide, but police have not yet released details on how each of them were killed.
In addition to the recently found four unidentified bodies, the four identified victims include:
Maureen Brainard-Barnes, 25, from Connecticut
Last seen on July 9, 2007 in Manhattan
Melissa Barthelemy, 24, from upstate New York
Last seen on July 12, 2009 in the Bronx
Amber Lynn Costello, 27, of North Babylon
Last seen in North Babylon on September 2, 2010
Megan Waterman, 22, from Maine
Last seen in Hauppauge on June 6, 2010
And police are still searching for:
Shannan Gilbert, 24, from New Jersey
Last seen in Oak Beach May, 2010