Police continued to gather evidence Saturday at the Massapequa Park...

Police continued to gather evidence Saturday at the Massapequa Park home of accused Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex A. Heuermann.

Credit: Joseph Sperber

Detectives did a door-to-door canvas Saturday in Massapequa Park to speak to neighbors of alleged Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex A. Heuermann as other law enforcement officers continued carrying out a search warrant at the defendant's Manhattan architecture office.

Both scenes were under investigation a day after Heuermann, 59, pleaded not guilty to murder charges in the slayings of three of the four women whose remains investigators recovered in December 2010 in a wooded area near the Suffolk County beach.

An examination of public records Saturday also painted a portrait of Heuermann as a litigious person who filed several lawsuits against motorists and had a habit of paying his taxes late.

A heavy police presence was at the defendant's home on First Avenue, where one of Heuermann's neighbors, retired FDNY firefighter Etienne de Villiers, said he peeked over his fence and saw crime-scene investigators in white suits in the backyard.

Throughout the morning, police seized evidence from Heuermann's house and loaded it into a truck in the driveway. Around 4:15 p.m., investigators took furniture, including a small couch and tables, from the home.

A block away on Broadway, a barricade closed off the street as residents set up coolers, cornhole games and music for a block party that kicked off shortly after 2 p.m. 

The revelers declined to comment, with some saying they just wanted privacy after investigators had been to their homes that morning. Children at the party slid down a large inflatable waterslide, enjoying the warm summer afternoon in the shadow of a crime-scene investigation. 

Throughout the afternoon, bicyclists, parents pushing strollers and dog walkers continued to gather along First and Michigan avenues to watch the action at Heuermann's home. 

One nearby resident borrowed police tape to block off his property so bystanders wouldn't trample the lawn.

Massapequa Park resident Erica Harmon, who lives a few houses away from the alleged killer, said her mother went into Heuermann's house while working on the 2010 census.

“She said the house was a disaster,” recalled Harmon, 30. “She said it was disgusting.”

Harmon said a detective contacted her mother Friday to ask about the census connection to Heuermann.

Harmon added she was worried the typically quiet neighborhood would transform into a “tourist town" because of the link to the alleged serial killer.

“I don’t feel safe at all with that,” she said.

Police were out in force Saturday in the Massapequa Park...

Police were out in force Saturday in the Massapequa Park neighborhood where accused Gilgo Beach serial killer Rex A. Heuermann lives. Credit: Joseph Sperber

West Hempstead resident Danny Flam, 55, stood near the police tape Saturday with his girlfriend and recalled taking photographs at Gilgo Beach in 2010 around the same time Shannan Gilbert disappeared.

Flam said he’s been following developments in the case ever since.

“It was on everyone’s mind because people were worried for years, 'Do you want to go out? There’s a serial killer on the loose,' ” he said.

Police who were searching for Gilbert, a young escort who went missing, found the remains of the three victims whom Heuerman is charged with killing and those of another woman in whose death authorities said he is the "prime suspect."

Heuerman's attorney, Michael J. Brown, on Friday called the case against his client "extremely circumstantial in nature" after his client's court arraignment. He said his client tearfully declared his innocence.

Records show Heuermann is no stranger to civil court cases. He filed four lawsuits against drivers in New York from 2014 to 2022, asserting each injured him. One lawsuit is ongoing and three were dismissed.

Heuermann said in a 2018 lawsuit dismissed a year later that another vehicle hit his car and he suffered “serious and permanent personal injuries.”

In an April 2018 lawsuit deposition, Heuermann said he had been married twice.

He married his first wife in 1990 in New Brunswick, New Jersey, according to a wedding notice in the Central New Jersey Home News.

In the court deposition, he said they were married about three years and had no children. The court record also shows Heuermann said he married his second wife in April 1996 and has a daughter and a stepson.

Documents also show Heuermann received state and federal tax liens of more than $400,000 going back to 2005. Government agencies filed lien releases showing he paid or no longer owed more than $200,000.

Heuermann also received a $68,750 judgment against him in 2008 from the Worker’s Compensation Board of New York, according to public documents. It was unclear Saturday why he received the judgment or if he paid it.

On Saturday in Manhattan, officials from the Suffolk County Crime Lab came in and out of the Fifth Avenue building where Heuermann's office is on the 11th floor.

Dre Dyson, 32, whose company has space on the basement level of the same building, said he didn't recall ever seeing Heuermann.

“It’s pretty crazy, so close to home,” Dyson said. “…You just don’t know about people.”

Authorities load a copy machine into a State Police truck...

Authorities load a copy machine into a State Police truck Saturday outside the Fifth Avenue building in Manhattan where Rex A. Heuermann's architecture firm is located. Credit: Newsday/Craig Schneider

At 11 a.m., three law enforcement officers exited the building, two from Suffolk police and one from the State Police. 

When asked how the probe was going, investigator John Seymour replied, "slowly." None of them would comment further.

A short time later, authorities pulled a big, black truck onto the sidewalk and loaded a few copy machines, printers, a desktop screen and two boxes into the vehicle. The police probe stretched into the afternoon, with investigators regularly walking to and from a Suffolk County Medical Examiner's van parked by the building.

Det. Lt. Kevin Beyrer, who heads Suffolk's homicide squad, said at the scene that investigators expected to finish executing the search warrant at Heuermann's office this weekend.

Employees of other neighborhood businesses said they were shocked an accused serial killer worked near them.

“Just thinking that these people walk among us, and you think that they’re a regular human being. You don’t think what they’re doing behind the scenes,” said Paola Conprears, 34, who works at the Vitamin Shoppe two doors down. 

Abi Ram, 25, works at the NYC Gift Shop a few doors away. 

“Obviously, it's scary," said Ram of the proximity to an alleged killer. "For 10 years cops have been searching for this guy."

With Matthew Chayes

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