What The Suspected Gilgo Beach Serial Killer's Life In Jail Is Really Like

You know how serial killers roll: Slaughter a bunch of innocent people according to a particular method, maybe do something grisly to the bodies, evade authorities for a bit, get apprehended, get put on trial, and lounge around in a lavishly appointed jail cell until ... let's say conviction and possibly execution? If the person is found guilty, that is. If not, the person will probably just have a really hard time getting a job after having a fairly tolerable time behind bars. Case dismissed.

But really, those of us who aren't suspected serial killers want to know: How's jail treating you, Rex Heuermann, aka the alleged Gilgo Beach Killer, aka the possible Long Island Serial Killer (LISK)? Heuermann was arrested back in July 2023 on suspicion of being the serial killer who's haunted Long Island's Gilgo Beach for over a decade. As of this writing, Heuermann is officially charged with the deaths of four women — the "Gilgo Four," as CNN describes. All four were sex workers discovered in December 2010, per NBC News. However, Crime Timelines explains that there are 16 additional potential LISK victims dating back to 1989.

As for Heuermann, former owner of the now-closed Manhattan-based architectural firm RH Consultants & Associates Inc., New York's Sheriff of Suffolk County Errol Toulon told WCBS 880 (via the Daily Mail) that he's "very comfortable" in jail. He's got a cell to himself, a TV, lots of time to sleep, is "eating normally," and has had precisely zero visitors. Also, his wife filed for divorce.

In a single cell on suicide watch

While things are not looking good for Rex Heuermann, he's still just a suspect. In fact, his trial hasn't even started yet, no matter that ABC News announced on July 25, 2023 that police had finished searching his property. Meanwhile, Heuermann is doing what all other suspects do: waiting. And while Heuermann waits, Suffolk County Sheriff Errol Toulon told WCBS 880 (via the Daily Mail) that he's "receiving all the services that any other person who's incarcerated will receive." 

Of course, waiting can range from an abjectly miserable experience (thinking of the DMV here) to a pretty nice experience (having wine after ordering pizza). Heuermann might not be lodged at a suite at the Hilton, but his facility appears to be a decent one. The Daily Mail says that he's being held at the Suffolk County Correctional Facility on Long Island, about an hour east of Gilgo Beach, the site of the murders in question. The Suffolk County Sheriff's Office says that the facility houses up to 840 people, has a medical unit that includes mental health care and dental care, a vocational work program for inmates that teaches things like carpentry and landscaping, and more.

While this sounds pretty cushy, Heuermann's still in jail. In fact, he's in a single cell because he's on suicide watch, a move that's "pretty standard" for a famous criminal, the Daily Mail quotes Sheriff Toulon telling WCBS 880. And yet, Heuerman seems totally comfortable and has proven "extremely compliant." 

TV, divorce, and no visitors

We mentioned that Gilgo Beach suspect Rex Heuermann has been watching a lot of TV. The Daily Mail says that he's been using his own personal TV in his cell, but hasn't been checking the news. This is true despite Heuermann having had just one, somewhat disturbing question for authorities after his arrest (per CNN): "Is it in the news?"  

Aside from watching non-news TV, the Daily Mail reports that Heuermann's been sleeping a lot and "seems to be reflecting," as Suffolk County Sheriff Errol Toulon told reporter Alex Caprariello. While there's no information on any of Heuermann's other prison activities, we know that two correctional officers are maintaining watch on him 24-7 — assumedly because he's on suicide watch. On that note, Toulon says that prison staff will evaluate Heuermann in the future to see if suicide watch is still warranted. Meanwhile, Heuermann has openly stated to prison officials that he doesn't intend to cause them any trouble while there.

One thing Heuermann has not had is visitors. CBS News explains that Heuermann has a wife of 25 years (Icelandic-born Asa Ellerup), daughter (Victoria Heuermann), and stepson (Christopher Sheridan) — none of them have visited him. Ellerup and Heuermann filed an "uncontested" divorce in July 2023, per the Daily Mail. Neither she nor her children have made any direct comments to the press about what's happened, although Ellerup's lawyer, Bob Macedonio, said that the family has been in a "whirlwind."

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