Unsettling Incident: Peering Over the Fence
Etienne Devilliers, who lived next door to the alleged serial killer Rex Heuermann, recounts a disturbing incident where he caught Heuermann leering over the fence at his wife while she was sunbathing in their backyard. Devilliers describes Heuermann as a tall and imposing figure who would often try to strike up conversations with his wife, causing her discomfort. As a firefighter, Devilliers confronted Heuermann about his behavior, leading to a heated exchange that ended the unsettling encounters.
The Mysterious Neighbor Next Door
Throughout the nearly thirty years of being neighbors, Devilliers noticed the peculiar and eccentric behaviors of Heuermann. He reveals that many others in the community purposefully avoided his house due to its unkempt appearance and eerie atmosphere. Despite Heuermann’s attempts to befriend neighbors, Devilliers chose to keep his distance because of his discomfort with the now-suspected killer.
Surprise and Shock at the Accusations
Devilliers was stunned when he learned about Heuermann’s arrest as a suspected serial killer. While acknowledging the strangeness of Heuermann’s demeanor, Devilliers didn’t view him as a violent person. He recalls confronting Heuermann about his inappropriate behavior towards his wife and threatening him, which led to a change in his neighbor’s actions. However, the discovery of Heuermann’s extensive collection of weapons was a shock to Devilliers, as he had no idea of the extent of it.
Insights into Heuermann’s Family Life
Devilliers provides glimpses into Heuermann’s family life, sharing his observations about his wives and children. He describes Heuermann’s second wife as reserved, only engaging in brief and curt exchanges. Devilliers expresses sympathy for Heuermann’s special needs son, who recently received a dog that brought him joy. He also notes that the daughter was introverted and rarely engaged in conversation. Devilliers expresses sadness for the children, who were often given manual labor tasks around the house.
A Neighborhood in Disbelief
After Heuermann’s arrest, Devilliers describes the neighborhood as chaotic, with an influx of reporters and curious onlookers. The once-quiet and safe community is now grappling with the shocking realization that a suspected serial killer had been living among them for years. Devilliers emphasizes the neighborhood’s unity and their collective shock and disbelief at the revelations. In these unsettling times, the community stands together, supporting one another.
Next Read: “Community Resilience in the Face of Tragedy”