Another Green River Victim Found

2001/11/30 Gary Leon Ridgway headshot, suspected Green River Killer
Remains found in a woods last weekend were identified Monday as those of a 16-year-old girl believed to have been murdered by a serial killer who targeted mainly prostitutes and runaways in the 1980s.

The skeletal remains of Pammy Annette Avent were found Saturday near Enumclaw, about 34 miles southeast of Seattle. The cause and manner of death were pending further tests, the King County medical examiner's office said Monday.

At least 49 women are believed to have died in the 1980s Green River serial killings. Avent's body was one of seven that had not been found.

"We need to do our work so that six more families can finally put their daughters to rest," King County Sheriff Dave Reichert said Monday in a statement.

Avent was last seen Oct. 26, 1983, after leaving her home in Seattle. She had been listed as a missing person on the list of possible victims prepared by the task force investigating the Green River serial killer, and had been arrested once for prostitution.

"Today we were able to return one victim home to her family," King County Sheriff's Detective Kathleen Larson said.

She said the department will continue to pursue all of the Green River cases, named for the river where the first several bodies were found.

Larson would not say whether Gary Ridgway, who is charged with aggravated first-degree murder in the deaths of seven Green River victims, told authorities where to look for Avent's remains.

Ridgway, 54, has pleaded not guilty to the seven counts. Spokesman Dan Donohoe with the prosecutor's office declined to comment on newspaper and television reports that Ridgway was negotiating a plea. He said prosecutors were focusing on Ridgway's trial, set for July 2004.

By Peggy Andersen