Most serial murderers kill for the pleasure and simply because it's an act of anger. Most of these individuals share predictable behaviors stemming from historical serial murderers whom they admire and powerful, wealthy men that they want to become. This was the case of Jack the Ripper and Gary Ridgeway.
Often times, these patterns start to depict the same kind of gruesome events that led Jack the Ripper to be one of the most notoriously known killers in 1888. Jack the Ripper would often remove the uterus and the heart of almost every one of his victims, giving him the name of "The Butcher".
For years, profilers have been obsessed by the fact that Jack the Ripper may have been a doctor or had some type of medical training. However, due to some advanced technology and skilled professionals, they may have come to the conclusion he was neither of these.
Crime has been evolving over the centuries. It has inevitably become harder to catch these individuals, but new technologies have been developed and we now have an advanced system to target these killers.
A system called Viggell is being used by Geographic Pro filers that breaks down the location of the killer using a math program that creates a 3 dimensional mountain outlined and shaded in different colors. When the profiler plugs in the information, the highest targeted area is highlighted in red which is called "The Red Summit". This is the area in which the profilers will most likely catch the killers.
When the area is targeted, the profiler will visit the site and determine why the killer chose this vicinity. They will examine the ease of access and the escape routes these killers may have considered. The result that is determined is called the "Jeopardy Surface".
Since killers tend to hunt in areas they know, computers are now able to pinpoint locations of these serial murderers. This was recently done with the information on file for Jack the Ripper.
They discovered that Jack would only hunt on the weekends, he would choose his victims on the basis of their age, and he only killed in areas he was familiar with, like Buck's Row in White Chapel.
He did have a pattern, which was hard to discover back in 1988. He would usually hunt in this order:
The Viggell technology has possibly tracked down the exact home of the Ripper over 100 years after the murders occurred.
Unfortunately, this technology was not around in 1982 when a body was found in Green River, Washington by D etective Dave Reichert. It was a story that rocked the world and the media sensationalized. Years and years went by and the police had no information except for the fact all of the victims were prostitutes from the King County area.
Off of Civic Highway South, there was a strip of 3 to 4 miles with hundreds of prostitutes on every corner. These girls were perfect targets considering for $20.00, they would get in a car and never be seen again.
For over 20 years, remains of over 30-40 victims were picked up by the Green River Task Force. There were few individuals over the years brought in for questioning.
Ironically in 1987, Gary Ridgeway was one of the potential suspects because of an assault on a prostitute, but after the police searched his house, vehicle, and locker, there was no evidence to further investigate. The media grew tiresome and the families of the victims grew angry.
Detective Reichert had one other option which was to consult with the Devil himself, Ted Bundy. Ted advised the detective he may be able to help with the case of "The River Man". Bundy gave him clues and tips to the killer's personality, but he gave no exact answers. He said "the killer is probably going back to the site to check things out, to see if the bodies had been disturbed". If they were, he wouldn't even try to go back again. "That's what I did".
After 3 more bodies were removed from the river, DNA testing was done on all three. At the time, Detective Dave Reichert knew in his heart it was Gary Ridgeway. When the results came back, he was right.
The Green River Police Force moved in to arrest Ridgeway. When he was brought into custody, Detective Reichert said "Gary and I are going to have a little visit". As soon as Ridgeway walked by, Reichert stated "Gotcha Asshole". They spoke about the plea bargain he would make with the court, that being a confession to 48 murders with the names of the victims. In all actuality, he had raped and killed over 71 prostitutes and he believed he was doing the world a favor by removing this trash from our streets. He told the Detective "he knew it was wrong, but they deserved to die."
On his Judgment day, he pled guilty to 48 counts of murder. The parents and family of the victims finally had a chance to face this monster after 20 years of torture. One such parent spoke of God and how it is our nature to forgive, even when faced with the most horrible of individuals. This testimony brought Ridgeway to tears, which was probably one of the only times this killer actually showed some sort of emotion.
The aftermath of this case was hard to forget. As Detective Reichert said, he could still picture every victim being pulled out of the river. He could imagine the look of their body, the color of their hair, and of course their name. It would haunt him till this day.
Gary Ridgeway is said to be one of the most notorious killers in the world however, few have ever heard of him or his story. Had the Viggell technology been in existence back in the 80's, it wouldn't have taken so long to find this monster.
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