Police share video of Gilgo Beach victim Megan Waterman
Long Island police have released a video they say contains the last known sighting of one of the victims in a decades-long homicide investigation.
Megane Waterman, 22, was last seen alive in June 2010. Her remains were discovered months later along Ocean Parkway near Gilgo Beach on Long Island in New York. She is believed to be one of at least 10 victims killed between 1996 and 2010 whose remains have been discovered in the area; Waterman’s remains were found along Ocean Parkway on December 13, 2010.
At a press conference on Tuesday, the Suffolk County Police Commissioner Rodney K. Harrison announced that the department released five surveillance videos showing Waterman in the lobby of a Holiday Inn Express in Hauppauge, Long Island between June 4 and June 6, 2010.
“We have released CCTV footage and photographs of the last time one of our victims, Megan Waterman, was seen prior to her death,” Harrison said.
Harrison said Waterman was wearing a yellow sweater and is shown both arriving and leaving the hotel.
“We believe she left the hotel that night to meet her killer,” Harrison added.
At the press conference, Harrison also announced a “completely revamped” Gilgo News website dedicated specifically to delivering information about the investigation of unsolved cases.
The website has been updated “so that investigators can effectively release more information to the public in a timely manner,” Harrison said at the press conference.
Harrison also said Suffolk Police, in partnership with Suffolk County Crime Stoppers, doubled the reward amount from $25,000 to $50,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction in the case.
Waterman, like several of the other victims whose remains have been identified in the Gilgo Beach area, worked as an escort and advertised on Craigslist.
She is one of the “Gilgo Beach Four”, the name given to a group of women who were last seen between July 2007 and September 2010. The other three victims are Melissa Barthelemy24, Maureen Brainard Barnes25 and Amber Lynn Costello27.
The grim discovery of the woman’s remains was sparked by the 2010 search for Shannan Gilbert, 23, who also worked as an escort. According to police, Gilbert was seen walking through the gated community of Oak Beach after leaving a client’s home.
In December 2010, while police were searching for Gilbert, they discovered remains which were later identified as Barthelemy. Within days, the remains of Brainard-Barnes, Costello and Waterman were also discovered in the area.
As the search for Gilbert continued, investigators found the remains of a fifth alleged victim in March 2011 several miles east of where the Gilgo Beach Four were found. These partial remains have been identified as belonging to Jessica Taylorwhose other remains had previously been found in Manorville, New York, about 45 miles from Gilgo Beach.
Taylor, according to police, also worked as an escort.
Other victims discovered in the Gilgo Beach area include Valerie Macwho disappeared aged 24 while living in Philadelphia, along with an infant daughter, a woman believed to be the toddler’s mother and an unidentified Asian man.
Mack’s partial remains found at Gilgo Beach in 2011 also matched another set of remains found at Manorville in 2000.
Harrison, the Suffolk County Police Commissioner, has created a multi-agency task force that includes representatives from the FBI, New York State Police, Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office and the Office of the Suffolk County Sheriff to “reinvigorate the investigation and bring the person(s) responsible for these crimes to justice,” the Gilgo News website reports.
“Several women, a man and an infant were stripped of their lives between 1996 and 2010. A continued search for missing persons in 2010 uncovered their remains across Long Island,” the website also states, calling the decades-long inquest into their deaths. “one of the most significant homicide investigations in Long Island history[.]”
[Images via Suffolk County Police Department.]
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