Ridgway waived his right to appear at his initial hearing. Defense
Attorney Mark Prothero, appeared on Ridgway's behalf. The judge
refused to allow bail in this case. Ridgway will stay in jail
awaiting his trial which could take up to 2 years.
defense attorneys, Prothero and Gruenhagen were concerned about
the time after the arrest, but did not know to what extent investigators
questioned Ridgway in the 90 minutes before he requested a lawyer.
He was arrested at 3 p.m. and did not request an attorney until
4:30 p.m. A lawyer arrived to see him at 6 p.m.
We dont believe that
we can get a fair trial under the publicity that has been generated
in this recent course of events, in this county that has lived with
this story for a couple of decades, says Prothero. News coverage
left "the deck stacked against him," Prothero said. "All
of this publicity has been very negative," he said, "and
will make it impossible for this gentleman to get a fair trial."
The defense is saying
King County Sheriff Dept. has crossed way over the line with unprecedented
statements to the media, convicting Ridgway before his side of the
story is heard. KING 5 News found over last 6 days, the major local
newspapers have written published 140 articles on the case. Local
television stations broadcast about 200 stories on the topic.
Imagine your husband
or your brother or your father in the same situation and try to
hold back on judgment at this point and not rush to the conclusion
that law enforcement wants everyone to rush to right now, says
defense attorney Mark Prothero. Claiming
press coverage has grossly tainted the jury pool.
King County Prosecutor
Norm Maleng disagreed. He says high profile cases from the 80s,
such as the Wah Mee massacre and Goldmark family murders were tried
fairly. In each one of these cases, we were able to impanel what
both the prosecution and I believe the defense believe was an impartial
it's important that Ridgway passed 2 polygraph tests in the 80's.
One was administered in 1984, after Ridgway approached Green River
investigators offering to help.
to question every detail of the case, we're going to scrutinize
it, including the DNA," said Mike Prothero. The defense says STR
testing is not ironclad. To imply that STR testing is 100 percent
accurate, 100 percent of the time is wrong, says Prothero. They
will be looking at all evidence collected in the 1980s, to see if
detectives collected things properly, or if evidence was contaminated.
There is a great chance of human error, even with DNA. It is not
infallible. We will not be conceding anything because of the purported
DNA evidence, says Prothero.
raise questions about the way DNA material
was stored for 20 years and if it was contaminated. DNA properly
preserved is an excellent investigative tool, but it is subject
defended James William Cushing, convicted in the 1990 ax slaying
of a 63-year-old Queen Anne woman. He also was part of the defense
team that won new trials for 16 people in the Wenatchee child sex-abuse
a native of the area has an office 3 blocks from where the first
Green River bodies were found.
Copyright Kari Sable 1994-2011