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UPDATE: Police Say Latest Remains Are Human

Two sets of bones found Monday near Jones Beach water tower bring total body count in Gilgo/Ocean Parkway investigation to 10.

Police said two new sets of remains found during today's beach search -- about one-and-one-half miles east of the Jones Beach water tower -- are human, but are awaiting confirmation from the medical examiner's office.

That brings the total bodies discovered along the ocean roadway between Robert Moses Causeway and the Nassau County line to 10. The first four have been identified. Today's two sets, along with three sets of remains found by Suffolk police last week, have yet to be identified.

The latest remains were found as law enforcement authorities continued their search for bodies in a wide area along Ocean Parkway. The search area today was expanded to include a region of Nassau County stretching from the Nassau/Suffolk line to Jones Beach.

“We continue the search and we’re intensifying our efforts,” said New York State Police Captain James W. Dewar. 

“There is debris and there are certain things that have been found that we’re going to investigate and determine what they are and how they may or may not affect the ongoing investigation in Suffolk County," he said.

The ongoing search for bodies resumed in the brush along Ocean Parkway early this morning by Nassau and New York State police following last week's Suffolk Police search effort. Authorities on Monday combed both sides of the parkway from TOBAY Beach to Jones Beach and may continue into tomorrow, if necessary.

Both lanes of the parkway, from Robert Moses to the Nassau line were shut down until 5 p.m. for the search effort.

Police have said the killings are the work of a serial killer and that some remains have been in the area for six months while others have been in the area for as long as four years.

Earlier today Nassau police dismissed media reports claiming a person of interest is under scrutiny in the Gilgo serial killer bodies investigation, and that the suspect is a current or former law enforcement official.

“To make such speculation [about developments] is unfair," said Det. Lt. Kevin Smith, commanding officer of the Nassau County Police Information Office.

During Monday's search, police used a variety of equipment and police teams, including fire truck ladders for aerial searching and canine units.

“We are working together and we are going to be as systematic and careful as we can and we’re not going to be done until we’re assured there are no bodies,” Smith said during a press conference held earlier in the day.

Police are also considering searching Guggenheim Pond as part of today’s effort, noting the 40-acre bird sanctuary may warrant investigation.

The four-mile search effort includes 50 New York State troopers, 50 state park police and 50 Nassau County officers from various units, including the mounted division, emergency services and the canine search division. Nassau police told Patch this morning it has not yet determined how long the search effort will take.

The latest parkway search comes on the heels of an intensive one-week search conducted by Suffolk police that covered an area from Robert Moses Causeway and the Nassau County line. During that effort four more sets of human remains were discovered about a mile east of where four young women’s bodies were found in December 2010.

The Suffolk portion of the investigation began on Dec. 11, 2010, with the missing persons case of Shannan Gilbert, a 24-year-old New Jersey woman last seen in Oak Beach on May 1, 2010. Gilbert has not been among the eight bodies discovered so far in the 124-day investigation.

Suffolk police believe the victims are the work of a serial killer, and published reports have claimed the killings may be related to the murders of escorts in the Atlantic City area several years ago.

The first four women found in Gilgo Beach were killed elsewhere and dumped in the thick underbrush along Ocean Parkway at various times over a span of several years, according to police. The first four found were young, white females who police said worked as Craigslist escorts.

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