Asa Ellerup, the wife of Rex A. Heuermann, outside her...

Asa Ellerup, the wife of Rex A. Heuermann, outside her Massapequa Park home on Friday. Credit: Neil Miller

This story was reported by John Asbury, Robert Brodsky, Michael O'Keeffe, Grant Parpan and Ted Phillips. It was written by O'Keeffe.

The estranged wife of accused Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex A. Heuermann issued a statement on Friday pleading with the media and spectators to give some space to her family and neighbors and to respect their privacy. 

Asa Ellerup said the lives of her family and especially her elderly neighbors have been turned upside down by “the enormous police presence, in addition to the spectators and news crews.”

“They deserve to live peacefully,” Ellerup said in a statement issued through her divorce attorney, Robert Macedonio. “They should be able to walk their dogs and go to the grocery stores without cameras shoved in their faces. I am pleading with you all to give us space so that we may regain some normalcy in our neighborhood.”

Ellerup did speak briefly to reporters on Friday outside her Massapequa Park home, a day after she and her two children returned to the house they shared with the suspected serial killer. 

The home on First Avenue was the scene of a 12-day intensive search for evidence by investigators for potential evidence linking Heuermann to the murders of three young women — and, authorities said, possibly other victims whose remains were found along Gilgo Beach. Several Nassau County police cars were parked in front of the home and circled the street.

"You guys know this is an ongoing investigation and I cannot speak to you," Ellerup told reporters camped out across the street. "If you want to stand up here and wait for something, I have a lot of work to do. If you want to take pictures, go ahead, I'm OK with it now." 

In comments earlier in the day to reporters, she talked about the "sheer depression" and "trauma" of what she saw upon returning home Thursday, declining to elaborate.

Ellerup and her children were seen throughout the day in the yard. A delivery person left a pizza on the porch in the afternoon, and about 10 minutes later, a man knocked on the front door. It was not clear what the man said to her, but Ellerup put her hands on her chest before taking the pizza inside. 

Heuermann, a 59-year-old architect, has pleaded not guilty to a six-count indictment charging him with first- and second-degree murder in the killings of  Melissa Barthelemy, Megan Waterman and Amber Lynn Costello. Heuermann is also the "prime suspect" in the killing of Maureen Brainard-Barnes, whose body was found in proximity to the other three women, prosecutors have said.

Heuermann's attorney, Michael J. Brown, has not returned messages seeking comment but said previously that his client denied the allegations.

Heuermann's next appearance before Supreme Court Justice Timothy Mazzei will take place at 2 p.m. Tuesday, according to principal law clerk Evan Tanenbaum. 

Suffolk County District Attorney Ray Tierney on Monday said investigators had seized a “massive amount” of potential evidence from the home that would be further assessed for evidentiary value. Among the items recovered by investigators were 279 firearms. 

Police opened First Avenue to pedestrian and vehicle traffic Monday afternoon — following the conclusion of the search of the home — but Nassau police said the department was stationing officers outside to enforce loitering and jaywalking laws to prevent the home from continuing to be a tourist attraction and disrupting neighbors.

Signs saying “no stopping” and “no standing at any time” have been erected on Heuermann’s block and on nearby Michigan Avenue.

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