No new finds in search for NJ woman

State officials Tuesday ended for the day their search for clues or more remains in the case of a possible serial killer and a missing New Jersey woman. Videojournalist: Jim Staubitser (May 3, 2011)

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The latest stage of an ongoing search for a missing New Jersey woman and clues in a serial killer case turned up no more human remains on a South Shore barrier island Tuesday, officials said.

On the second day of a State Police-led canvass, several dozen troopers scoured an area in and around Captree State Park at the east end of the island, between the bay and Ocean Parkway, police said.

Investigators, some atop ATVs, found animal bones and refuse in the brush along the roadways, but nothing believed to be connected to Shannan Gilbert, 24, or the Gilgo Beach serial killer case.

The search, part of the ongoing Gilgo case involving four dead women and up to six other unidentified remains in Nassau and Suffolk, "yielded negative results," said Trooper Frank Bandiero.

There are no plans to continue the search Wednesday.

Forty troopers and nine state park-police officers were joined by Suffolk police canine units and members of the Gilgo homicide task force during the five-hour search.

State park police supplied two ATVs to help cover the mile-and-a-half search area. Investigators with binoculars peered into the brush from firetruck cherry pickers at the edge of underbrush.

"When you're hovering above this thick brush, it's not as dense," Bandiero said.

State Police on Monday searched along Wantagh State Parkway in Nassau County, recovering no more bones or clues.

All of the remains found so far have been along Ocean Parkway between Cedar Beach and Jones Beach State Park. The first four remains, all young women who worked as prostitutes, were found in December during a search for Gilbert. Gilbert was last seen alive in Oak Beach a year ago.

In March and April, Suffolk police found four more sets of remains, including a child wrapped in a blanket and a human head in the plastic bag, according to sources with knowledge of the investigation. Nassau and state officials found a skull and a bag of human bones near the parkway on April 11.

Only the initial four victims have been identified: Maureen Brainard-Barnes, 25, of Norwich, Conn.; Melissa Barthelemy, 24, of the Bronx; Megan Waterman, 22, of Scarborough, Maine; and Amber Lynn Costello, 27, of North Babylon.

Tuesday, a California attorney representing the Gilbert and Waterman families walked through Oak Beach accompanied by a videographer and a private investigator. The attorney, Robin Sax, said she is on Long Island this week to see the sights related to Gilbert's disappearance and the Gilgo Beach investigation.

@matthewchayes

@andrewstrickler

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