Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York The New Jersey woman whose disappearance from Oak Beach led to the discovery of a serial killer’s dumping ground will finally be laid to rest—nearly five years after she went missing.Services for Shannan Gilbert will be held this week on Long Island, according to her family’s attorney, John Ray, of Miller Place-based Ray, Mitev & Associates. In December, the family had sought donations to pay for the burial and to rent a funeral home where an independent medical examiner could perform a second autopsy. But results of the second exam were not released.“Finally, we were able to raise money and convince funeral directors to donate services so that Shannan could be examined and buried,” Ray said. “Her remains have stayed in the Suffolk County Medical Examiner’s office until now because the Suffolk Medical Examiner refused to allow Dr. Michael Baden, a renowned independent medical examiner, to examine Shannan’s remains.”Police were searching for Gilbert—a sex worker who was reported missing on May 1, 2010—when they discovered 10 sets of human remains along Ocean Parkway in December of that year. She was last seen fleeing the Oak Beach home of her last client, Joseph Brewer, who police have said is not a suspect in the deaths.The Suffolk County Medical Examiner’s office had only said that the cause of death is “undetermined” for Gilbert. Police have also said they suspect Gilbert—whose body was found in a marsh less than a mile from Brewer’s home—was not a victim of foul play. But Gilbert’s family believes that Shannan was killed by the same person behind the other murders, whose victims include other online escorts.Ray is representing Gilbert’s mother, Mari, in a lawsuit against Dr. Peter Hackett, who allegedly told her that he took Shannan in and drugged her before she went missing. Hackett later denied those claims in media interviews. Hackett, who has since moved to Florida, is also not a suspect in the deaths, police have said.Services for Gilbert will be held 11 a.m. Thursday at Amityville Cemetery, 55 Harrison Ave, in Amityville.
Former England captain Terry Butcher has urged Roy Hodgson to build his side around Everton starlet Ross Barkley as the boss begins his preparations for Euro 2016 next summer.The Everton starlet was one of the stand-out performers towards the end of the Three Lions’ qualification campaign, and seems guaranteed a place in the line-up for friendlies against Spain and France this week.Questions have been raised over the 21-year-old’s defensive work-rate, raising doubts over his future in Hodgson’s possession-based system when the likes of Jack Wilshere and Jordan Henderson return from injury, but ‘Captain Fantastic’ Butcher insists Barkley’s attacking qualities are too good to miss.Speaking on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast, Butcher said: “Ross Barkley impressed in qualifying and he must play, Roy Hodgson must find a place for him in the team.“He’ll have to do a lot more defensive work, chasing and closing down, but it’s his work on the ball is his real quality.“I think he should play and that they should virtually build a team around him.”England travel to face Spain in Alicante on Friday, before hosting France at Wembley on Tuesday in the first group of friendly tests before next summer’s tournament.And after coming through their straightforward qualification group with a 100 per cent record, Butcher believes finally facing top quality opponents ahead of the championship will be vital for Hodgson’s men.“They’ll learn a lot more about each other and as a team in these games,” he added. “If they try to get on the ball and impress and try and do well against Spain and France it will give the players a lot of confidence ahead of the tournament.“It’s nice to play these big teams, because at the end of the day the qualification group was far too easy. You didn’t learn a lot about the England team from those games, they just qualified and made sure they went through.“Games like this will whet the appetite and, if we get a result, it’ll give the team and us confidence that England can do it.”