On Tuesday, July 8, a couple on Long Island made a gruesome discovery in some tall grass near a municipal parking lot as they were walking towards the ferry: the partially dismembered remains of a female. The area is located in Bay Shore, NY, near Maple and Main Streets, less than 30 miles away from the area in Gilgo State Park, where eight sets of remains were discovered between 2010 and 2011. Has the Long Island Serial Killer (also known as the Gilgo Beach Killer) struck again? Authorities aren’t releasing much information yet, only to say that the female has not yet been identified and they have released cadaver dogs into the area, as well as Gilgo Beach, apparently in an attempt to make sure other bodies have not been dumped in that area as well. Between 2010 and 2011, investigators discovered a total of ten individuals along Gilgo Beach, Oak Beach, and Jones Beach State Park. They announced in November of 2011 that one individual was responsible for all ten murders. Only five of the victims have been identified. Police believe the majority of the victims were strangled and dismembered.
Many FBI profilers and serial killer experts suspect the killer may be someone who is familiar with the Long Island area or a seasonal vacationer. Since the five identified victims all went missing during the summer months, it is possible the killer visits the the area each year around the same time. He might even have his own vacation home. Many believe the locations of the disposal sites indicate his familiarity with the area. It is possible the killer grew up in the Long Island area and returns each summer.
However, the killer has been dormant since the last identified victim went missing in 2010. Many people in the area have lived in fear, wondering if he would strike again. The proximity of the location where the newest body was found, along with the murder taking place in the summer months, as well as the reports that the body was partially dismembered seem to tell a familiar tale.
Here’s something else to think about: In June, the body of a twenty-one-year-old medical technician was discovered in a wooded area in Medford, NY, about 16 miles from Bay Shore (in the opposite direction from Gilgo Beach). Search parties were looking for the missing mother after she was reported missing and her car was discovered abandoned about a mile away from her home. Police have released very little information pertaining to this particular investigation–only that they have identified the victim as the missing woman, Sarah Goode, and it is an active investigation. However, there are reports stating her friends have contacted the police about a male acquaintance she was having problems with. Sources say that police collected blood evidence from inside the car and they believe a violent struggle took place before her death. I think it is less likely that Sarah Goode’s death is related to the Long Island Serial Killer, but due to the fact that she was found in a wooded area in the same county as the other bodies, I don’t think anything can be ruled out at this point. Perhaps that is why police haven’t released many details to the press about this particular case.
Needless to say, I’ll be watching these cases closely and will post any updates as they are made available. If you have any information about either of these cases, I urge you to call the Homicide Squad at 631-852-6392 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.
UPDATE: The dismembered woman has been identified as Chinelle Latoya Thompson Browne of Brooklyn, NY, and a woman who lived in her apartment building, Leah Cuevas, has been charged with her murder. Witnesses claim the two fought loudly on July 4 over a rent dispute and police have located Browne’s blood inside Cuevas’ apartment. In addition, a nineteen-year-old named Dante Taylor has been arrested and charged with the rape and murder of Sarah Goode. It appears, for now, that both are isolated incidents, and not related to the Long Island Serial Killer.
To read more about the Long Island Serial Killer, check out RJ Parker’s Serial Killers Abridged, which published May 31, 2014. I wrote the 101st case file in the book, highlighting the details of this particular case, including what FBI profilers think about the killer.