Rex Heuermann, an architect and the primary suspect in the notorious Gilgo Beach killings, reportedly enjoyed discussing his gruesome hunting escapades with his colleagues, according to coworker Mary Shell. Heuermann, who ran a consultancy firm since 1994, was described as being partial to hiring petite, young women who resembled the physical profiles of his alleged victims.
Heuermann relished describing his hunting practices, specifically his bear hunts, much to the unease of his employees. Shell described instances of Heuermann referring to clients as ‘targets’, suggesting a predatory mindset.
According to Shell:
“More than once, he gleefully described the process of dressing the game, seeming to delight in grossing his employees out. Once, at a job site, he spotted a client approaching and, speaking to my boss over the phone, said, ‘Target in sight.’”
“His office was mostly staffed by women like myself, young and petite, the girl-next-door type. We knew he was married with a family in Massapequa, but he never spoke of them.”
“He famously loved guns, and we all knew that he was a collector. He would frequently invite colleagues to go hunting or shooting at the range, including one of my attractive co-workers that he seemed to mention the idea to every time they spoke.”
Before meeting Heuermann in 2007 for a project, authorities believe he had already committed his first murder. Shell noted that he presented himself as an expert in navigating New York City’s building codes and regulations. She also mentioned his fascination with guns and his frequent invitations to colleagues for hunting or shooting activities, which were often met with discomfort.
During this time, it is alleged that Heuermann was soliciting escorts online, with at least three of them later found dead on Gilgo Beach in 2010. Heuermann, now 59, has been charged with murder in relation to these killings.
Despite Heuermann’s disturbing behavior, his arrest shocked Shell, who initially struggled to accept that her former coworker could be a killer.