Green River Killer By Gary Leon Ridgway

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“Green River Killer” Gary Leon Ridgway Elizabeth Sabie Florida International University “Green River Killer” Gary Leon Ridgway In the summer of 1982, while playing in the woods, children found the body of a young teen was floating in the Green River in King County, Washington. Sixteen year old Wendy Lee Coffield was found strangled with her own panties and tossed into the river like a piece of refuse. Her murder sparked an investigation that spanned three decades. Coffield 's body was the first of many found in or near the Green River in a murder spree that remained unsolved for twenty years. The victims were young women, often prostitutes or runaways, who hitchhiked along Highway 99, a dilapidated stretch of the Sea Tac Highway known for its strip clubs, drugs, and seedy motels (Montaldo). While the majority of the murders occurred between 1982-1984, police had little success in tracking what they soon realized was a serial killer. Within a year the police had found four more bodies of young women, and they formed a task force to apprehend the Green River Killer. It became apparent that the killer had chosen this stretch of highway to hunt for his victims. The women found here lived in such ways that no one really noticed if they went missing. This proved even more problematic for the task force, because they were searching for a killer who had committed the murders months prior. The bodies had decomposed and it was extremely difficult

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