After months of exhaustive searching through dense brush and marsh on a Long Island barrier island, police have finally identified the remains of missing prostitute Shannan Gilbert. However police do not believe that Gilbert died at the hands of the serial killer believed to be responsible for the 10 other bodies they found in the area. Rather, they think Gilbert's death was accidental, making the search for and discovery of Shannan Gilbert the Coincidence of the Century as far as crime cases go.
Theories going around the past couple weeks were that she got disoriented trying to navigate the mud and thicket, and possibly fell, got stuck and drowned. This should come at some relief to her family who have been searching for the girl since she went missing in May, that it was a random accident and not a sinister and sexually motivated crime by some sicko. Still, getting trapped and dying in a swamp seems like something more apropos for the desert, the mountains, or the Everglades and not a quiet little beach community on the South Shore.
Gilbert was last seen knocking on a stranger's door and acting irrationally before she vanished, so clearly she was distressed and not thinking properly, or under the influence, which would not have been unusual in her profession -- working as prostitute.
Police's latest theory based on where her skeletal remains were found is that Gilbert had the nearby parkway in her sights and was frantically trying to make it there when she got lost and disoriented. They have not said exactly what her cause of death was, which will surely be forthcoming in an autopsy.
Still, the coincidence of Gilbert going missing in almost the exact same spot as a serial killer dumping ground that randomly led police to the discovery of those bodies is eerie if not even supernatural, as if Gilbert's death was part of some grander plan to lead authorities to the bodies and prevent future deaths. We will never really know, but one thing we do know is that the serial killer who it turns out probably never even knew or met Gilbert has been kicking himself the past year over this really bad run of luck. Let's hope it really has finally run out.
What do you make of this incredible coincidence -- totally random or supernatural?
Image via WorldsIslandInfo.com/Flickr