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Task Force Formed to Hunt Down the Notorious Gilgo Beach Serial Killer

In 2021 we reported on how the incoming Suffolk County DA in Long Island, NY, had vowed to renew the hunt for the so-called “Gilgo Beach Killer.”  Now, New York law enforcement authorities say they have formed a special task force to capture the Gilgo Beach serial killer who has remained unidentified for more than 11 years.

According to Suffolk County Police Commissioner Rodney Harrison, The Suffolk County Police Department will form a team to identify and locate the perpetrator behind the Gilgo Beach homicides. They’ll work alongside investigators from the FBI, New York State Police, Suffolk County Police Department Homicide Squad, Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, and the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office.

On Dec. 11, 2010, Suffolk County police officer John Mallia found the remains of Melissa Barthelemy along Ocean Parkway while searching for missing person Shannan Gilbert. Two days later, the bodies of three more victims were discovered. Within the next four months, six more sets of remains were located, and on Dec. 13, 2011, Gilbert’s remains were found.

This will be the first time federal, state, and local agencies will jointly deploy investigators to solve one of the country’s longest-standing serial killer cases. 

Within the most recent years of investigation by the police, very little evidence of the killings has been found. This includes a black leather belt believed by the Suffolk County police to have been used by the suspect and a lengthy 911 call made by Gilbert on the night of her disappearance, which remains unreleased to the public.

“Our partnership in this task force shows our commitment to getting these heinous crimes solved. The families deserve it,” Suffolk County District Attorney Raymond A. Tierney said. Select members of the task force will meet daily to streamline efforts in solving the decade-long case.

In total, ten bodies were discovered in and around Gilgo Beach — the majority of them sex workers. Several of the bodies have still not been identified.

Over the ensuing years, Suffolk County police have been notoriously tight-lipped on the case and have said very little.

As always, the task force is asking anyone who may know something about the cold case, no matter how insignificant they may think it is, to contact authorities. 

Submit tips to police by calling Suffolk County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS (8477), visiting, or using A $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest, in this case, is being offered.