Rex Heuermann entered the courtroom on Long Island on Tuesday with his mouth tightly closed, his hair unkempt, and his wrists tied. The voices of those there grew quieter.
The approximately 140 onlookers were not noticed by Mr. Heuermann, who is accused of murdering three women and concealing their bodies close to Gilgo Beach in a case that has baffled investigators for years. Some of them were blood relatives of the victims. Others were journalists who had written about Mr. Heuermann but had never met him.
Mr. Heuermann waited while facing the magistrate.
Suspected killer and Victim Families faces each other in court for first time:
— Nathan Adams (@NateAdams5k) August 1, 2023
The early Tuesday morning hearing in Riverhead, New York’s Suffolk County Court was not well publicized. In court documents, it was simply referred to as a “conference” and, in most circumstances, it was just a regular attendance.
However, some 250 journalists, producers, photographers, and videographers waited for hours to see the eight-minute event. Since his arrest on July 13, Mr. Heuermann, a 59-year-old architectural consultant in Manhattan who has rejected the accusations, had appeared in front of a judge twice.
On Tuesday, prosecutors claimed that they had given Mr. Heuermann’s attorney, Michael J. Brown, four drives with a combined capacity of two terabytes, each of which held 2,500 pages of paperwork, pictures, and hundreds of hours of video gathered by the police and the prosecution.
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The district attorney for Suffolk County, Raymond A. Tierney, stated at a news conference following the trial that “the charges in the indictment are just allegations” and that this evidence “is the first step in the process of proving those allegations.”
In a county with such a big population, Mr. Tierney said that he would take the lead in Mr. Heuermann’s prosecution. He has discussed the case on national television numerous times.
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