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Ridgway avoided media by waiving his initial court appearance several days following his arrest in the downtown King County Jail.

On 12-4-01 Ridgway was charged with 4 counts of aggravated murder in the deaths of Carol Ann Christensen, Marcia Fay Chapman, Cynthia Jean Hinds, and Opal Charmaine Mills slain in the early 1980s.

The charges carry a sentence of life in prison without parole or the death penalty.

Prosecutors asked that Ridgway, a "suspect in over 40 other unsolved homicides over the last 19 years" who frequently travels out of state be held without bail or not less than $25 million bail, calling him.

Pro-tem Judge Anne Harper determined there was probable cause to detain Ridgway, without bail.

The hearing was held before reporters and photographers, including some from British Columbia. The courtroom's sound system failed, so the media was unable to hear anything. A glass partition separates spectators from the judge, lawyers and defendants.

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