New Clue In N.Y. Serial Killer Probe - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

New Clue In N.Y. Serial Killer Probe

AOL.COM - Clothing and other items belonging to a missing New Jersey prostitute whose disappearance helped spark an investigation into a possible serial killing spree on New York's Long Island have been recovered near where the woman was last seen 18 months ago, police said Wednesday.

Suffolk County Police Commissioner Richard Dormer said officers have not found any remains of 24-year-old Shannan Gilbert, who they think drowned, but said the search would resume on Thursday.

"If it wasn't for Shannan Gilbert's disappearance we may never have found the remains of the other victims," Dormer told reporters at a news conference.

Police were looking for the Jersey City, N.J., woman last December when they stumbled upon what would eventually become 10 sets of human remains in the underbrush along a beach highway on a barrier island south of Long Island. Dormer and other police officials said they do not believe the deaths of the 10 people, mostly women linked to the sex trade, and Gilbert's disappearance are related.

Detectives on Tuesday and Wednesday found the woman's pocketbook with a photo ID inside, her jeans and shoes, as well as a cellphone they believe she owned. They think she drowned after becoming upset for an unexplained reason.

"It's very easy to get engulfed with water, muck, and fall down and not be able to get out of there," Dormer said. "We surmise that's what happened to Shannan and she's in there some place and we're going to do everything we can to find her."

In a telephone interview with Newsday, Gilbert's mom, Mari Cox Gilbert of Ellenville, N.Y., said she watched the news conference on television.

"I am still doubtful," Gilbert told the newspaper. "I need to see the items for myself to believe it."

Shannan Gilbert was last seen at a client's home in Oak Beach, a gated seashore community several miles east of Jones Beach State Park. She was taken by a driver to the Oak Beach community, where she met a client for sex. The client, Joseph Brewer, was interviewed by police but is not considered a suspect, authorities said.  Click here to read more

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