crime paper - Absent Socialization A Theoretical Analysis...

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Absent Socialization: A Theoretical Analysis of the Green River Killer On November 30 th , 2001, Gary Leon Ridgway was arrested for the murders of
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seven women. These murders, among many more, are attributed to the brutal behavior of the “Green River Killer”. During Ridgway’s reign over numerous decades, he viciously killed around 71 women throughout the northwestern United States. In fact, during a period of around 2 years, Ridgeway is thought to have killed around 50 women. Mostly prostitutes and runaways, Ridgway meticulously dumped their bodies across the northwest. By dissecting Tomas Guillen’s text, Serial Killers: Issues Explored Through the Green River Murders, and by analyzing police videos taken from after his arrest, a cognitive interpretation of the “Green River Killer’s” interactions within society will be developed. Further evaluating the source of Ridgway’s actions, we will examine Travis Hirschi’s Theory of Social Control, which is known “to be one of the more enduring contributions to criminology” (Gibbons, 1972, p. 121). As early as the Gary Ridgway’s early school years, he was getting into trouble. As a little kid he would break windows of houses and partake in other destructive behavior throughout the neighborhood. One day Gary, only in the 7 th grade, stabbed a fellow classmate at school. This incident led to the uproar of his parents and a long chain of events within his family. However, this skirmish was officially Gary’s first out lash. During the same time, Gary was involved in criminal behavior by abusing animals. In an interview with Dr. Mary Ellen O’Toole, he explains how he suffocated an innocent cat by locking it in an ice chest. The cat was unable to breathe as Gary held the lid sealed. Eventually the cat suffocated, Gary the culprit of its demise. As Gary grew older his criminal behavior continued. Gary then indulged in sexual intercourse with a prostitute. This conduct continued for many years until his actions gradually worsened. Gary began by assaulting prostitutes working the street corner. He would run up, choke them, and 2
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then release before they suffocated. All of these actions are quite minute compared to the path Gary Ridgway was about to embark. Gary committed numerous killings in the northwestern United States. Totaling about 71 deaths, the “Green River Killer’s” murders were publicized across the country. Gary’s victims were always females. Most of them were travelers or prostitutes that were alone when Gary confronted them. In an attempt to lure his victims into his car, he would usually offer them money; however, Gary admitted to experimenting with numerous tactics. In an interview, Gary explains that money was the most proficient tool in acquiring trust. As well, he would normally offer safety by promising that he would return them to wherever they wanted to go in the area. In an attempt to hone his skills of deceit, Gary experimented with other tactics. He would sometimes offer to let the girl borrow his car for he weekend.
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