By Mark Prothero
At first, Mark Prothero, safeguard lawyer for Gary Ridgway, thought: "This cannot be the fairway River Killer! he is too usual! he is too small. he is too calm. he is too well mannered! He cannot very likely have murdered forty-nine women. they can not be critical! they have to have screwed up! i did not discover then, yet i used to be right. Gary Ridgway hadn't killed forty-nine women. He'd killed much more than that."
Soon, Mark Prothero confronted the query: "How may perhaps you most likely defend the so much prolific serial killer in usa heritage, the notorious eco-friendly River Killer? If someone deserved to be achieved for his crimes, did not he?"
Mark Prothero, co-lead security lawyer who helped shop Gary Ridgway from the dying sentence, has heard that query repeatedly. Now he’s written a booklet that finds the genuine, inside of tale of precisely how an idealistic public defender, highschool swim trainer, husband, and pa may possibly convey himself to spend many months of shut confinement with a guy who brutally murdered at the least seventy five younger ladies, frequently within the act of intercourse. Defending Gary indicates how Prothero may perhaps reconcile those giant acts figuring out the truth of this unassuming fellow Gary Ridgway, a mild-mannered, church-going, dedicated husband, father, and previous army guy, with an IQ of round eighty two and an established task as a truck painter from Auburn, Washington, close to Seattle.
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Extra info for Defending Gary: Unraveling the Mind of the Green River Killer
Here it was again: the subtle dichotomy between Gary the innocently naïve and Gary the guilty—you could take his answers both ways. Gary described more of the questions, and Greg and I could both see the detectives were trying to psychologically stampede him into confessing. Sometimes the questions suggested that there was a witness who’d seen Gary drive away with one of the victims. At other times, they suggested that continuing to deny things would only make matters go harder for him. It was clear that, having told Gary that they wouldn’t be able to use anything he said in court (untrue), they hoped Gary would relax enough to tell them what they desperately wanted to know: whether they were right.
Nothing,” Gary said. “I told them I didn’t do it. Then one of them called me a monster and told me all about lethal injection, how they put the needle in your arm. . ” So now I knew Gary had denied to the police that he was the killer. I decided not to press him on this. I rarely ask clients first thing up front if they are guilty. How can you expect to get an honest answer from someone who doesn’t know you from Adam? And in this case, on something he has kept secret for eighteen years, assuming that he might actually be guilty.
Gary had been at his job as a painter at Kenworth, a truck manufac-turing plant in Renton, just south of Seattle, when two detectives came to ask him some questions. I learned that it wasn’t the first time Gary had talked to the police about the Green River case. He’d been a suspect in the case as far back as the 1980s, and his house had been searched in 1987. But unlike others who’d attracted the attention of the police during the twenty-year nightmare, Gary Ridgway’s name had never been published or broadcast.
Defending Gary: Unraveling the Mind of the Green River Killer by Mark Prothero