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the Green River Killer

VICTIMS

Deaths:   44 +       Attempts:   2 +
 
1) Wendy Lee Coffield / 16 / July 8,1982 / strangled
2) Gisele Ann Lovvorn / 17 / July 17,1982 / strangled with socks
3) Deborah Lynn Bonner / 23 / July 25,1982 / strangled
4) Marcia Faye Chapman / 31 / August 1,1982 / strangled
5) Cynthia Jean Hinds / 17 / August 11,1982 / strangled
6) Opal Charmaine Mills / 16 / August 12,1982 / strangled by pants
7) Terri Rene Milligan / 16 / August 29,1982 / ?
8) Mary Bridgett Meehan / 19 / September 15,1982 / ?
9) Debra Lorraine Estes / 15 / September 20,1982 / ?
10) Linda Jane Rule / 16 / September 26,1982 / ?
11) Shawnda Leea Summers /  17 / October 2,1982 / ?
12) Denise Darcel Bush / 23 / October 8,1982 / ?
13) Shirley Marie Sherrill / 19 / November 1982 / ?
14) Colleen Renee Brockman / 15 / December 28,1982 / ?
15) Alma Ann Smith / 18 / March 3,1983 / ?
16) Delores LaVerne Williams / 17 / March 1983 / ?
17) Gail Lynn Mathews / 23 / April 10,1983 / ?
18) Andrea Childers / 19 / April 14,1983 / ?
19) Sandra Kay Gabbert / 17 / April 17,1983 / ?
20) Kimi-Kai Pitsor / 16 / April 17,1983 / ?
21) Marie Malvar / 18 / April 30,1983 / ?
22) Carol Ann Christensen / 21 / May 3,1983 / strangled with cord
23) Carrie Rois / 15 / 1983 / ?
24) Martina Theresa Authorlee / 18 / May 22,1983 / ?
25) Cheryl Lee Wims / 18 / May 23,1983 / ?
26) Yvonne Shelly Antosh / 19 / May 31,1983 / ?
27) Constance Elizabeth Naon / 21 / June 8,1983 / ?
28) Kelly Marie Ware / 22 / July 17,1983 / ?
29) Tina Marie Thompson / 22 / July 25,1983 / ?
30) April Dawn Buttram / 17 / August 18,1983 / ?
31) Debbie May Abernathy / 26 / September 5,1983 / ?
32) Tracy Ann Winston / 19 / September 12,1983 / ?
33) Maureen Sue Feeney / 19 / September 23,1983 / ?
34) Mary Sue Bello / 25 / October 11,1983 / ?
35) Pammy Avent / 16 / October 26,1983 / ?
36) Denise Louise Plager / 22 / October 30,1983 / ?
37) Kimberly Nelson / 20 / November 1,1983 / ?
38) Lisa Yates / 19 / December 23,1983 / ?
39) Mary Exzetta West / 16 / February 6,1984 / ?
40) Cindy Ann Smith / 17 / March 21,1984 / ?
41) Patricia Michelle Barczak / 19 / October 11,1986 / ?
42) Roberta Joseph Hayes / 21 / February 1987 / ?
43) Marta Reeves / 37 / March 5,1990 / ?
44) Patricia Yellow Robe / 38 / ? / ?

MOTIVES

A) suffered from nymphomania that was combined with strict religious beliefs causing a contradiction of thought
B) suffered from severe sado-maschism
C) holds a strong dependency on women

QUOTES

(on how he viewed his victims)
" To me,women are something to have sex with
kill and take the money back. "
 
(a note he wrote to police,after being arrested,in order to get things straight)
" I am a killer of street ladies,not a raper.I never stabbed a person with a screwdriver or putty knife.I never killed or hit anybody with a bat,club,or big stick(two-by-four).I never killed or hurt anybody with an axe or hammer.I never ran anybody over with car,truck,bike to kill or hurt them.I never shot anybody to kill or wound them.I never tinted my windows so people couldn't see in.I never killed any lady that wasn't having some sort of sex for money or rides(no joggers,shop people,neighbors,school kids).I didn't smoke cigs,pipes,cigars,or chewed tobacco.No hitting,or slapping to any person.Every lady I did kill got paid on what we both agreed on.I never used duct tape on any person.I never used a box cutter on anybody.I bought my ladies,I didn't need force.I never drugged or got any person drunk to take advantage of them.Did not need to,my way worked out faster.Less trouble. "
 
(on how he stopped his necrophilia on his victims)
" I had to bury her so I wouldn't go back.Thats when I had to start burying them.I was keeping away from the urge of doing that. "
 
(on his method of killing)
" Choking is what I did and I was pretty good at it. "
 
(when asked where he murdered his victims)
" I killed some of them outside.I remember leaving each woman's body in the place where she was found,I killed most of them in my house near Military Road,and I killed alot of them in my truck not far from where I picked them up. "
 
(when asked why he picked prostitutes as his victims)
" I picked prostitutes as my victims because I hate most prostitutes and I did not want to pay them for sex.I also picked prostitutes as victims because they were easy to pick up without being noticied.I knew they would not be reported missing right away and might never be reported missing.I picked prostitutes because I thought I could kill as many of them as I wanted without getting caught. "

BOOKS & FILMS

The Search For The Green River Killer by Carlton Smith (1991)
The Riverman:Ted Bundy And I Hunt For The Green River Killer by Robert Keppel (1995) [updated in 2004]
River by Roderick Thorpe (1996)
Time Magazine:River Of Death (2002)
Court TV's Mugshots:The Green River Murders-Gary Ridgway (2002)
Gary Ridgway:The Green River Killer by the Staff of the King County Journal (2003)
The Serial Killer Files:The Who,What,Where,How,And Why Of The World's Most Terrifying Murderers by Harold Schechter (2003)
Green River,Running Red:The Real Story Of The Green River Killer-America's Deadliest Serial Murderer by Ann Rule (2004)
Chasing The Devil:My Twenty Year Quest To Capture The Green River Killer by Sheriff David Reichert (2004)
Serial Killers:The Method And Madness Of Monsters by Peter Vronsky (2004)
CBS 60 Minutes II:The Mind Of A Serial Killer (2004)
A&E's Riverman starring Bruce Greenwood & Carey Elwes (2004)
A&E's Cold Case Files:The Green River Killer

Full Name: Gary Leon Ridgway
Alias(s): the Green River Killer
Birthdate/Birthplace: February 18,1949 (Salt Lake City,Utah)
Died: Still Alive

 
Spotlighted : February 2005
 
 
 
Capture:
In 1987,Detective Matt Haney caught eye of a suspect named Gary Ridgway due-to his police file stated that in 1980,Ridgway had been arrested for choking a prostitute(he was released due-to claiming self defense,that she had bitten him),and then in May of 1984,Ridgway had been arrested for trying to pick up a prostitute whom was actually a police officer undercover(he was also released for this after taking a lie detector test and passing as not being the Green River killer),and then,in that same year,Ridgway was seen with one of the victims in his truck before she disappeared.Ridgway had also been known at the strips where the victims had been picked up and that he passed by the strips on his way to work everyday-where it was also found out that Ridgway was either absent from work or off from work at the time the victims disappeared.Haney obtained a search warrant to obtain a DNA sample from Ridgway himself,which was all done on April 8,1987.After the search of the home,there was no evidence suggesting Ridgway was in the fact the murderer,so he was then released.The Task Force continued until 1991,when the case officially went cold with no new leads.The case was reopened in April of 2001 due-to Detective David Reichert,whom was an original member of the Task Force.Reichert put together a small team of only six members,mostly consisting of DNA and Forensic experts-all the evidence collected during the murders was re-examined by the DNA technology available;on September 10,2001-semen that was found from three of the Green River victims' matched the DNA taken from earlier suspect-Gary Ridgway.On November 30,2001 Ridgway was placed under arrest.
Aftershock:
Preceedings started in 2003,Ridgway pleaded not guilty but Prosecutors gave Ridgway a pleabargain stating that if he confessed to the murders and help find 4 bodies of still missing victims,the death penalty would be taken off the table-Ridgway accepted the deal and pleaded guilty on June 13,2003.On November 5,2003-Ridgway recieved 48 life sentences without the possibility of parole.Ridgway can still face the death penalty due-to some of the victims were found outside King County(where the majority of victims were found),but this is only if these jurisdictions decide to go through with the cases.Criminal  psychologists as well as most of the detectives on this case believe that Ridgway did not work along,but Ridgway has denied all claims that there was another murderer.Ridgway was sent to Walla Walla prison after trial,but he was moved to the Twin Rivers Correction Center instead.Ridgway has seen been ordered to pay $74,459 to the victims' surviving family members(which for each family is from $300 to $6,500-it depends on the cost of the burials/funerals/cremations).