Headless, Armless Torso Found On Queens Beach Possibly Belongs to Missing Irish Filmmaker

Despite the dismemberment, police don't suspect foul play.

Police reportedly believe the headless, armless torso which washed up on a New York beach last week belongs to an Irish filmmaker who disappeared earlier this month.

The New York City Police Department responded to Breezy Beach in Queens on Friday, where officers found “an unidentified, human torso with attached legs discovered laying on the sand.” While identity of the deceased is “pending proper family notification,” law enforcement sources told NBC News the remains appear to be those of filmmaker Ross McDonnell.

Authorities are reportedly working with the Irish consulate and waiting on results from DNA testing.

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McDonnell, 44, was last seen on November 4th, leaving his Bed-Stuy apartment on his bike, which was later recovered at Fort Tilden Beach — the beach next to where the body was discovered. Per an earlier NBC report, his friends also found some of his clothes on the beach and believe he went swimming.

Law enforcement sources also told the outlet that they don’t suspect foul play or suicide, instead believing it’s possible McDonnell drowned while swimming; the severe damage to his body, they believe, could have been caused by sharp rocks and sea life.

The medical examiner’s office will determine a cause of death.

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A Dublin native, McDonnell won a cinematography Emmy for the Showtime series The Trade, as well as his work on the 2021 Covid doc The First Wave. The filmmaker and photographer also co-directed the 2009 documentary Colony and worked on the Disney+ National Geographic series Edge of the Unknown.

He also released his first photo book, Joyrider, in 2021.

Anyone with any information is urged to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish calling 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).

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