After the initial freak-out over the Long Island serial killer earlier this year seemed to die down as leads dried up and police leaned toward the theory of multiple, random killers (why that was more reassuring, I'm not so sure), this scary story and some alarming new details are back. Just in time for my trip to Long Island this weekend, yay! I travel to the New York island about three times a year, and sure enough, one of them is this weekend, on the heels of learning that one person alone was responsible for the 10 bodies found over the last year, a person who is still on the loose and is probably plotting even more murders as we speak.
Even if you're not a North Easterner and live nowhere near Long Island, you can probably understand how locals or fairly locals might feel about these developments, even if they aren't his direct targets. No one likes standing in line at Starbucks thinking the guy in line ahead of her might have strangled a woman to death last night. That is unsettling. And the new revelations that police recently spoke up about are, too:
1. It's one killer, not many. As mentioned, for some reason, thinking that the stretch of beachfront along Ocean Highway was merely a "dumping ground" for lots of different, random maniacs, and not just one, was more reassuring in some way. When police initially announced that theory, the case didn't seem as movie-worthy and sensational anymore, and interest died down. So, it was more a place of convenience than a murderer's lair. Okay, made sense. But now that it's one guy again, a guy who takes sick pleasure in murdering women and children or on a warped vendetta, is much more alarming.
2. All victims were sex workers. The toddler who was found in one of the shallow graves is believed to be the child of one of the murdered women. It's disturbing enough to think about anyone committing the murder of an adult, but someone who could take the life of an innocent child who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time? This guy is sick and dangerous beyond words.
3. Shannan Gilbert is not connected to the case. The disappearance of the Craigslist prostitute who was last seen distressingly banging on the door of a nearby home in May 2010 does not fit the MO of the serial killer who dumped the bodies along the strip. Okay, so what happened to her? Are you trying to tell me there's ANOTHER killer wandering around in the same area? Add that town to the list of places I will never ever visit.
4. Police fear new victims. Suffolk County Police Commissioner Richard Dormer told NBC Tuesday: "That's why we are moving as fast as we possibly can to apprehend this person." Any serial killer in their right mind who knew the police were hot on their trail would stop their crime spree straight away. But not this guy. Police obviously know a little about him now, including that he will not stop 'til he's caught.
5. He's not a cop. Police originally thought the suspect might be law enforcement because he knew the nature of a police investigation well enough to cover his tracks. But it appears anyone could learn that from TV and the Internet. Talk about scary.
6. He's from Long Island. The stretch of beach is long and desolate. A person who chose to bury bodies there had to know the area well to pull it off. And that means he's probably still out there right now, scanning the Craigslist listings for prostitutes, lining up his next kill. Right after he takes out the garbage and waves hi to his nice neighbor from across the street.
Do you ever wonder that you might not know your neighbors as well as you think you do?
Image via WorldsIslandInfo.com/Flickr