The Riverman (2004) Script

[Keppel narrating] I have a question.

If you know someone, someone close to you, And you put together all the pieces, All the laughter and the tears, And the silences--

All the deep, telling moments of their life--

Then... well, then you can inhabit them and feel part of them.

Hi, dad.


But if you've known someone... with a soul so dark... so terrifying... and you've crawled into every foul corner That they think they've hidden from you...

and you've inhabited them...

[woman screams] [crunching sound]

How do you-- How do you come back?

Can you return to how you used to be?

Dad, you missed it. No hands!

[male singer] ¶¶ love is a weapon ¶¶

¶¶ it can cut you to the bone ¶¶

¶¶ love makes you bleed but love makes you strong ¶¶

¶¶ love's never perfect ¶¶

[crowd chattering]

[cop #1] yeah, we were second car.

What do we got, lieutenant?

Reichert, anybody ever tell you you have lousy taste in music?

Yes, sir, you did. What'd I say I was gonna do If I caught you with a radio in a county car again?

You said you break it into a thousand pieces and plant my young butt in the property room.

But that's not my radio. That's my wife's.

She gave it to me to get fixed because it only gets one station.

Which is why it was in that car And why I was listening to that particular song instead of Opera, sir.

You're full of it, Reichert. Yes, sir.

Lieutenant! Better have a look.

You ever walk point on a case yet, Reichert?

No, sir, not yet.

Well, that just changed.

[cop #2] Sir? Lieutenant Downing?

You're lead, detective. Better go see what they want.

Yes, sir.

I'm Reichert. I caught lead on this. What do we got?

Another body!

Look, I'm new, okay, but I'm not that--

Weighted down with rocks. Big suckers.

Probably go 40 pounds each.

[Reichert] bring her up on shore and then scour the bottom.

Bring me anything that's down there.

I don't care if it's a dead guppy, I want to see it.

Be careful.

[shutter clicking] [flash whining]

[cop #3] okay. All right.


Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Oh, Jesus Mary mother of god.

[wolf howling]

You can't depend on M.O. to link up a serial killer's murders.

'Cause they read the paper, they watch TV.

They'll even study other serials to learn all they can to avoid capture.

Then they'll change their M.O. based on what they've learned.

So if you wanna catch a serial killer, forget about his M.O.

And focus on his signature.

'Cause the signature is the on thing that will not change because he has to leave his personal calling card.

A serial killer is psychologically compelled to leave his imprint on the victim.

[slide projector clattering]

[Keppel] Jessica Standish.

The killer murders her in his truck, Then he drags her body out into the alley, he sweeps the area clean, and he poses her.

So, that's some sort of biblical thing, right? With the fish and the wine?

Sure, it could be biblical. That's a tempting place to start.

Uh, but if your instincts run to something a little less sophisticated, I wouldn't ignore that either. [door hinge squeaking]

The world's most notorious serial killer is now on death row in Florida for the murders of three girls.

We believe he was also involved in at least two dozen other murders between 1974 and 1978, eight of them here in this State... ranging in age from 30... to 12.

[slide projector clattering]

As Ted Bundy says, "whatever gets your rocks off."

All right, we'll talk about Bundy next week, and, uh, go wash your brains.

You don't process this stuff, you'll end up in a straitjacket.

[students chattering]

[Keppel] they're all ligature strangulation?

[Reichert] Yeah. The fresh kills, anyway. Can't tell about these.

He's been busy.

Yeah, we're up to 13. Ten since July.

Hmm. They all working girls?

We think so. The lab hasn't I.D.'d them all yet.

Any of the recent finds fresh?

No. We found two more in the river after the first three, But nothing but bones since then.

You caught yourself a tough one.

We're spinning our wheels, Bob.

And the media's all over us.

My plate's full, Reichert.

I got four guys for 13 dead girls.

They gave you help? [chuckles]

[loud rock music playing]

[loud rock music playing]

Guys? [knocking]

Guys? Hey!

[music stops] Hey.

Think you could, uh, maybe just keep the doors, uh, Closed? Uh-Huh.

I could hear it all the way from the marina.

So, uh, just... it's a-- but it sounds-sounds- It sounds good. Just...

hi, sweetie. Hi, dad.

How was rehearsal?

Good. Yeah?

[sighing] you're coming to the performance, right?

Well, yeah. I'm getting box seats.

That's why I'm having my tux cleaned.

As if you have a tux.

Yeah, as if your studio has box seats.

[Sande] Bob?

Yeah, something smells good.

Salmon. How'd your day go?

Oh, not bad.

You want a beer? No, but your friend might be ready for another coke.

What friend?

The one who says he's working on the green river case.

Sande, I didn't invite him. I've already told him no.

Fine. I'll fix him a plate.

Hey, Dave. Bob.

Let's take a walk.

You know what the worst part is?

The phone? Yeah.

It rings, and I pray it's not another body.

Some cop. I'm afraid to pick up the phone.

These are still missing.

Downing's talking about folding the task force back into homicide.

He does that, I'll never catch him.

He's out there, Bob.


And I'm not even close to stopping him.


[exhales, grunts]

[phone ringing]

[woman] are you any closer to finding somebody?

Any closer at all? I mean--

Well, uh-- [clears throat]

We are narrowing the list of suspects every day.

We're gonna get him.

I can promise you that.

We know you're doing your best.

My daughter was smart.

She was in college.

She would never get herself into a situation where she--



[woman] I want to know where she is so I can--

So I can bring her home.

[phone ringing]

[whooshing & crunching sounds] [young woman screams]


[screaming echoes]

[Sande] you're not sleeping.

Hi. No.

I should cut down to three pots of coffee instead of four, huh?

Reichert's a victim, too.

You know? He's just-- It's--

He's getting overwhelmed by it all. It's kind of caving in on him.

You know, it's-- He's near the edge. I can see it.

I know. I've seen it before.

Oh, I'll be fine. It's-- you know.

It's not-- Sande, it's not even my case.

I'm just-- You know, I'll consult and...

What? You're-- you're gonna--

Uh-- just-- yeah.

Reichert will call, and I'll give an opinion, and... done.

Office too warm, Bob?

I saw the crowd. I thought it was a bake sale.

After the 6:00 news, the perp's gonna know everything we know.

Count on that. What do you got?

Bones. Female. Two sets, he thinks.

You find the way the perp dragged the body down the hill?

I will. [men arguing]

This is a crime scene. What do you think you're doing?

[Reichert] Guys? Come on!

Easy, Reichert. The media's on our backs enough as it is.

Bob? How you doing? It's been awhile.

Yeah. I'm doing fine, downing.

Keppel and I worked major crimes together.

You two know each other, huh?

Yeah, I was Reichert's Rabbi when he was a rookie.

I just got a cold case I need to ask him about, if that's all right.

Yeah. Sure.

It's nice seeing you, captain.

Oh, I see they're finally gonna fry Ted.

Yeah, I guess so.

When is that?

I don't know exactly.

Uh-Huh. We'll see you, Bob.

Can you, uh, can you get me those victims' jackets?

I guess so. I mean, strictly speaking, I'm not supposed to-- just bring them to my house.

Police aren't saying whether this latest grisly find Is the work of the green river killer, but there seems little doubt that this gruesome discovery will be added to the growing total, Bringing the number of victims to 15, All of them apparently prostitutes who worked a three-mile stretch Of the pacific highway south known as "The Strip."

[news anchor] Thank you, Lyn. And here's Vince Conrad with the weather for this weekend.

[Reichert] They all had those pyramid-type rocks found in their vaginal canals, except for Mills.

They all found in the water? Not all of them.

This is where I found mills.


So, he brings Chapman here.

Then Hinds.

And then Mills, but something happens.

He doesn't put Mills in the water. He doesn't shove a rock into her.

The bridge. Maybe someone was on it.

He panicked and dropped her.

[phone ringing]

Keppel, huh?

Just a suggestion, sir.

He was lead on the Bundy case, So he's up to speed on serials, And so he'd be like an independent review.

So if we had to fold the task force back into homicide, nobody would say we didn't do everything we could.

That's not bad.

You know, the day they got word that Bundy was busted, He was next on Keppel's prime suspect list.

No, sir, I didn't know that. Yeah.

All that time, and then some Utah State trooper gets him on a traffic violation.

Huh. How's he doing? Okay?

He seems fine.

Good. Those cases can suck you under.

Ruin your career.

Yeah. Okay.

Have Keppel review what we've done so far and write up a report.

A good report.

You understand what I mean by "good," don't you, Reichert?

It'll be good, sir.

[distant siren wailing]

[Keppel] so you begin.

You start putting together the pieces.

Who he hunts, where he hunts-- his killing ground.

What he does to them after he's killed them.

All the foul places he lives.

Until he seeps into your pores.

Lives in your dreams. and if you do it right... [heavy thud]


Then, maybe... maybe you can learn enough to stop him. [grunting]


And you pray.

[breathing heavily] you pray a lot.

Because you know if you don't stop the son of a bitch, he'll keep on killing.

[Downing] Are you aware of how this makes us look?

Like a bunch of bumbling incompetents.

I don't think it's as bad as you're making it out.

"Where are the follow-Up reports?"

"Same frame of reference for all interviews."

"More bodies means more cops." You think this is helpful?

Some of Keppel's suggestions aren't bad, lieutenant.

I think he's just trying to help. Help?

You know him well, do you?

Not really, sir.

He's an okay guy, Reichert. He's a complex guy.

But look, each one of us has a different reason for doing what we do on this case.

You, Keppel, and me.

My reason is very simple.

I need to make an entire department work On a budget that wouldn't pay for a decent bottle of scotch.

I know that, sir.

If you knew it, this report would reflect it.

Look, I don't wanna fold your task force into homicide, But I got a lot of cases, and yours is just one of them.

And it's about hookers.

And half the time no one even knows if they're missing.

Am I making myself clear here?

It's about people, lieutenant.

Yeah, well, you gotta learn to prioritize, detective.

Now, go on, get outta here while I figure out what to do with this damn thing.


Keppel sent a copy of the report to the chief.

He wasn't happy.

Well, he'll get over it.

Bob, it took me eight years to get my gold shield, and I would appreciate--

Eight years?

Just eat your doughnut.

Eat it yourself, Keppel. Oh, come-- relax.

It'll blow over. Just have your coffee.

What are you in this for, Keppel?

The same thing you are.

[loud rock music playing]

Thanks, guys!

[music continues]

Dinner's in the oven.

Thanks. Sorry.

It's just it was so busy down there. God!

It's never-Ending.

What is it?

Hi, dad.

Hi, sweetie.

[scoffs] bye.

Mail's on the coffee table.

You want to tell me what's going on?

I don't know what's going on.

He has our address. How did he get our address?

I don't know, and it doesn't matter.

He's in prison. He's not going anywhere.

You don't know that. He's escaped twice already.

What are you doing?

What am I supposed to do, just ignore it?

That man is evil, Bob. He infects everything he touches.

I don't want any thing from that man in this house.

Throw it out.

I'm not gonna throw it out.

It's what I do.

[Bundy's voice] Dr. Keppel, It's quite presumptuous of me to write, I know, But I think I might be of help With your investigation of the green river murders.

I believe I have strong insights into the mind of the man responsible For placing the bodies on the locations you have found.

[alarm buzzes]

I've been incarcerated with several serial killers, and as a result of my extensive conversations with them, I think I know a serial killer's frame of mind and motives better than almost anyone.

Because of this, I believe I can bring a unique perspective To your hunt for the Riverman.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Just... sweetheart, I know how bad it was for you not getting Bundy.

We all do, but-- No, that was just history. It was years ago.

I know, I know, I'm, uh...

I'm just saying that... okay.

Okay, well, just... say it.

Why are you doing this to yourself?

You know, I'm not doing anything to myself.

I'm just doing my job.

I know, I know, but it's my job to protect this family.

I mean, do you think that you were the only one that--

Honey, sometimes you'd come home, your head was so far into Bundy, Those kids, they'd run into their rooms and hide.

You'd come to bed, and you'd... you'd lay there, your head was so full of death.

Hey, hey, hey... okay, come here, come here.




I-I know it was bad.

Neither of us want to go back there.

You gotta trust me, Sande. in the letter, Bundy says he can help us find the green river killer, And they're gonna need me to go back and talk to him.

It's not about Bundy.

It's just about catching the killer of these-- God knows how many--

It's not about the eight women in Seattle that Bundy didn't confess to?


It's under control. That's...

I know how far I can go.

I will not put this family through that again.


[ship horn blows]


[door opens]

You wanted to see me, sir?

Dave, nice to see you. Come on in.

I reread Keppel's report again and you're right, Dave.

A couple of his points make sense.

I sent it upstairs with a recommendation that we implement the suggestions.

Chief Erickson agrees. He's expanding the task force.

And he's giving us more money so we can do it right, And he wants Keppel to work with us, So he's now officially on board.

You're kidding.

Now, enjoy your trip and report to me when you get back.

What trip?

I'll let him explain that.

I-I can't go anywhere.

I have to integrate the new people into the task force.

Uh, see, the chief feels that with a task force this size, It'd be better if I walk the point.

So you'll be my number two.

Nice work, Dave.

What the hell is going on?

Politics. Politics is going on.

I lost the task force.

Downing played me like a fish! [laughs]

Yeah. That he did.

You think that's funny, don't you? No, I don't, no.

But the next time somebody tries to play you, it's not gonna be so easy.

What's this? It's a plane ticket. We're going to Florida.

For what? Ted Bundy.

This here was used for quarantined prisoners back when they built the place.

Bundy raised holy hell when I put him here.

Some crapola about his rights.

I told him he shouldn't have tried to escape.

You'd think a right smart fellow like that would be thanking me, putting him in the coolest cell in the prison.

Never has.

This is the coolest? Even on a hot day.

Sammy will let you out when you've had enough.

Thank you for your help, warden Owens.

I may be a redneck son of a bitch, Mr. Keppel, But Ted Bundy ain't gettin' out of my prison.

I understand that.

I know you do. let me know if you need anything.

Other than a good shower when you get done with him.

[gate opens]

Hello, Ted.

Oh, uh... hey, Bob.

Long time no see.

How you doin'?

I'm good. Thanks.

This is my partner Dave Reichert from King County.

He's the presiding detective on the green river case.

Listen, Bob, I, um, I think I made a mistake.

How so?

Well, I-- I think I wasted your time, Bringing you all the way down here.

It was presumptuous of me to think that I could have any insight into this case.

I mean, I'm-- [scoffs]

I'm no detective.

You guys are much better at this than I am.

Doesn't mean you don't have good ideas.

Your letter indicated some insights.

We're looking forward to hearing 'em.

I did have this one idea about catching him, but, uh...

[scoffs] you'd probably think it was a little bit odd.

If I felt that way about your ideas, I wouldn't be here.

Well, I... I had this one thought, and, uh, well, you may think it's way off-Kilter, But it occurred to me, you know, no one has ever made a correlation between violent sexual movies That involves fantasy role-playing.

People who actually act upon them.

And I was thinking, if you held a slasher film festival In the sea-tac area, mm-hmm.

I guarantee you that if you staked out the theater...

[brushing teeth]

And took pictures of all the patrons going in and out, [spits, continues brushing]

I'm sure you'd have a... [spits] whole pile of suspects.

That's another discussion.

one thing's certain:

This Riverman of yours is a low-risk hunter.

Uh-Huh. Low-Risk hunter?

Yeah. Whores are easy prey.

They're bold, hard to intimidate, Cut off from their families.

No one cares if they're missing for a few days.

Can we just get some perfunctory questions out of the way?

Are aware the interview's being taped?

I am.

And it's being done with your approval? Yes.

See, this guy's a bottom-feeder.

Doesn't have the moves, control for classy victims.


Tell me about trolling, Ted.

Well, it's, uh...

It's what he does.

[Bundy] This one plans.

He knows his hunting ground.

He trolls until he finds the one he wants.

And then when-- When everything's right--

The time, The place, The feeling...

he casts his lure and...

[snaps fingers] gotcha.

You'd be surprised at the kind of people running around out there.

It's, uh... [laughs]

It's frightening.

So what's a classy victim?

Women with normal lives:

Clerks, housewives, students.

Subjects who live in neighborhoods With friends who'll miss 'em if they disappear.

Subjects that take skill To lure them out of their comfort zones.

Subjects you need to put the moves on.

In other words, things that are of an art.

How? How does he lure them? What are his moves?

The Riverman doesn't have moves. They come to him.

We are talking about the Riverman, aren't we, Bob?

Well, what else are we allowed to talk about, Ted?

I can get you inside his head, but, um...

I'm gonna need the files to do it.

Mm... [chuckles]

Well, you don't expect me to work from news reports, do you, Bob?

What's this, one file?

Yes, one file.

There'll be more later if it works out.

Wait a minute. Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. [laughs]

Where are the photos? The crime scene photos, the coroner's photos.

There's no photos in here.

[closes briefcase]

There are lots of photos, Ted.

[keys jingling]

[gate opens]

Hey, Bob.

I heard you took it hard when the--

When the killer of those eight Seattle women got away from you.

It's good to see you feeling better.

[gate closes]

Are you okay?

Yeah, I'm fine.

That boy's a piece of work, all right.

Talking to him's like having a slug crawl over your face.

Yes, when you're talking to his good side. Thanks, Sammy.

[Reichert] I apologize. [Keppel] what for?

I thought you were playing me to get to Bundy.

You sure I'm not?

[truck horn honks]

[shower running]

[phone ringing]

Detective Keppel.

He what?

Well, yeah--

What, does the judge think he's dealing with a shoplifter?

That son of a bit--

Yeah, yeah.

Okay. Thank you.

The judge in Utah let Bundy travel while he's out on bail.

So where is he?

He's here.

[Keppel] here he comes, folks.

Ted Bundy, law student.

Pride of the Seattle Young Republicans.

You read that article in the P.I.?

Politician runnin' off about how it couldn't be his friend Ted.

Let's see what he has to say.

Bob, are you sure you want-- Oh, Shit.

Hey, Ted.

You need some help with that?

Oh, no, no, I-I got it. Thanks.

Bob Keppel, king county.

You guys must think I'm a-- a flight risk, huh?

No. We just think we have eight open cases we'd like to talk to you about.

Yeah, yeah, I know, but, um...

[sighs] now is not the time.

[line ringing]

Hey, Reichert. Reichert.

Bundy is gonna use the Riverman to tell us about himself.

It's because he understands the Riverman, Dave.

We'll still get-- [giggling]


[giggling continues]

Tell me you didn't bring those with you.

Sure. I take 'em everywhere.

Relieves tension.

[giggling continues]

You have the opportunity to have a whole lot more fun relieving the tension.

No! No, I...

I-I didn't. I mean I wouldn't. I'm married.

Buzz off, Keppel.

You are Jimmy Stewart, aren't you? No!

No! I am-- I am... really embarrassed.

So what do you think got the biggest reaction yesterday?

The photo. It got to him.

Yeah. And you know what? He's scared.

Of what? Probably scared of being worthless.

He wants us to know he's important.

So we're gonna tell him he's aces.

We're gonna respect him.

Can you handle that?

I don't know.

This is a continuing conversation with Ted Bundy.

The time is 1400 hours. Go ahead.

Hey, Bob. Yeah.

I don't suppose you can have a word with the warden, See if we can do these interviews out there?

I feel kind of claustrophobic in here.

Well, I don't know. I'll-- I'll see what I can do.


Let me say first of all that...

I have a lot of preconceptions based on nothing, Just based on a feeling, intuition.

And having said that, I went over the file you gave me, And, uh, it sort of reshaped my feelings, looking at what you had here.

Yeah. And then I just got to, you know, Jotting a few things down, and you see here, It shows the date... and approximate time of each disappearance.

And given the data, you can that see he must work odd hours.

At his day job, not his night work.

Ted. Yeah. That's good work, Well, I'm no expert in this area, But I do have a degree in psychology.

Am I loud enough for that tape?

Yeah, yeah.

Yeah, no, it's making-- It's making sense.

Just keep going.

Thanks, Bob. I hope it's helpful.

As you can see, he's only taken one victim on a Friday And one on a Saturday.

Clearly he prefers to hunt Sunday through Thursday.

Well, what do you think about that?

He's got a weird day job.

Yeah, or he spends weekends with his family.

Yeah, yeah, that's good thinking.

Or he works Sunday through Thursday And trolls while he's working, like a--

Like a cabbie. Yeah, like a cabbie.

Or a bartender... or a pimp... or anyone who works on the Strip.

Not anyone.

Anyone nonthreatening.

See, the whores are looking for a monster, Some big, drooling, tattooed guy with a meat cleaver in his hand, And that's just stupid.

'Cause the Riverman looks normal, Just like you and me.

Yeah, he's just a normal guy, Bundy.

He is a normal guy. That's the point.

Normal guys don't kill little girls.

Dave! Normal guys don't leave heads in fields.

Dave, can it.

You know, Bob, I'm sick and tired of being treated like an animal or ogled at like I'm some kind of weirdo, because I'm not.

And if you think you're gonna catch the Riverman, Dave, you're very much mistaken Because you don't have the guts to pay the price.

You know what?

Well, let's see what Thetacoma Herald had to say about it, shall we?

Detective Reichert of the green river task force must be feeling the heat with more than a dozen unsolved murders--

Dave, no, no.

Wow, that's some review.

Yeah, there are still more bodies out there.

I guarantee it.

I wanted to waste him.

I really did. I wanted to kill him.

I never done that before.


Maybe he's right, Bob. Maybe I'm not cut out for serial work.

You through whining?

Go to hell! Oh!

A swear word just escape that virgin mouth?

What is it with you anyway, Keppel?

I screw up, and all you can do is joke about it?

The reason I'm working with you is 'cause you have the balls to ask for help, which means you're more interested in bringing down the perp than protecting your skinny ass, but it's not gonna happen unless you learn to control your emotions.

Dave, did I say we were gonna try and keep a low profile so the press doesn't find out we're here?

Yeah. Why?

Your fan club's been busy.

Ah, geez!

Mr. Reichert, you have message.


Don't they usually leave messages in your room?

Found another dump site.

[Bundy] so, uh, where's Dave?

[Keppel] He's back in Seattle.

You know, I don't think Dave's gonna make it, Bob.

[handcuffs click] What do you mean?

Well, he's too confrontational too judgmental.

You'd last a second with any of the guys on the row with an attitude like that.


How does a detective talk to someone Without them feeling they're being judged?

Well, first you have to establish trust.

How do you do that? How do you get 'em to talk?

Me? Yeah.

Well, I play at being intrigued at what they did.

See, each guy has a particular view of the world, So I just figure out what that is.

I'm sorry. I'm not really following you.

Can you give me an example?

There's this one guy I got talking to here.

He told me all about the women he'd killed, but... wouldn't talk about this one little girl he was accused of raping and murdering.


Finally he admitted that he couldn't talk about it because people would think that he was a bad person.

Get what I'm saying?


Anyway, I was, um, I was going over my notes last night, and... my initial impression was that the person you're looking for is probably a young white male Possibly working at a low-paying job that restricts his movement.

And how young is young?

20, 25. Married?

Doubt it.

He's got girlfriends?

Well, if there is someone, It's more than likely there have been relationship problems.

I also think there's an excellent chance That this guy's been picked up for something.


Assault, battery, maybe.

I don't know. Hmm.

He's impressive... to a point, Given the fact that his cargo gets into cars with strange men for a living.

Yeah, yeah, but these are- I mean, they're tough.

They're street-smart girls. I mean, how does he do it?

Well, he blends.

He knows the scene.

Yeah, he knows it better than his prey does.

He knows her hours, The corner she works, When she hasn't tricked and her pimp's in her face to produce.

And then, then when the time is right, He moves... soft as the rain.

He's flowing now... like a river... because... she's the one, the chosen.

And she?

She belongs... to him.

Car? What's going on in his mind when he's got her in the well, it's hard to say.

I mean, how can I get deeper into his head?

You sure you wanna go through that again?

Yeah, but I need you to help me.

[scoffs] That's good psychology, Bob.

You know what you are?


You're a fisherman who fishes for years and only catches small fish.

Deep down, you know there's a real big fish under there, One that always gets away.

But you'll never catch him.

The only way you're gonna know what goes on under the water is to go under the water.

But fisherman drowns going underwater.

I can take you there without drowning, but... in order to do that, I'm gonna need the photos.

[door closes]

Crime scene photos.

I might be able to do it with that.

These are complex people, Bob.

People who have things to teach us about life...

about ourselves.

Yeah, everything's fine. How are the kids?

They're fine. David's practicing, and Ally's making like a pretzel.

Bob, are you there?

Yeah, yeah. How are the kids-- Sorry. How are you?

I'm fine. How's it going with Bundy?

Oh, it's a piece of cake. It's okay.

Honey, I got a real long day tomorrow, okay? I love you.

Hold on. Ally wants to say hello.

Here, sweetie.

Hi, dad.

[hangs up]


[dial tone]

He hung up.

[girl screams]

[Bundy] he feels the power, the drive.

No one can touch him.

He is invincible.

And what else does he feel?

Anticipation, Excitement, arousal. Very high state of arousal.

Can he satisfy his arousal?

Only by possessing her... completely.

And how? How does he possess her completely?

Well, the ultimate possession is death.

[Bundy] Time slows.

It's an aura.

It's hallucinogenic.

But at the center, At the center, there's clarity. Ice in the fire.

[Keppel] what is he thinking about his subject?

She's a symbol: a gook, a Nazi.

And he must keep it that way.

Why is that?

Well, a symbol doesn't create problems. Humans do.

So he doesn't let her talk.

He chatters, he entertains.

And she is captivated.

How do you feel, Bob?

Could you-- Could you see her, smell her, taste her?

[guard] Mr. Keppel, you got a phone call out here.

No, not now, Sammy.

No, it's your partner, sir. He says it's important.

You were there. I mean, I know you were.

No, you were there, Ted.


Yeah, I was.

But I was helpful, wasn't I?

Well, we'll see.

You know, you should go to the Strip, Bob.

See what he sees.

Be the Riverman.

Who knows? Maybe you are.

[hinge squeaks]

[gate closes, locks]

Thank you.

This better be good, Dave. He's starting to talk.

He keeps at it, he might even buy himself some time.

We have a suspect. After what Bundy said, I checked out the guys who've been picked up on the Strip.

He was busted for soliciting an undercover cop in April of '82, divorced twice with a history of spousal abuse. Uh-Huh.

He admits to a fascination with prostitutes.

And this.

[locks brake]

Paints trucks at Kenworth. That's about 20 minutes from the Strip.

Come on.


This is how you want it, right? Yeah.

[yelps] Bitch.

You're a pretty one. [whimpers]


Take it, slut. You like this, don't you? Yes.

You fuckin' like it. [grunts]

Where does he live? Near the green river.

She called the des moines police and swore he was trying to kill her.

The cops stop his pickup, and he says he choked her because she bit him.

[man yells]


[Reichert] He had a bite mark to prove it.

This happened three years ago. Yeah.

And nobody thought he might just possibly be a suspect.

It was buried in the Port police files.

So they let him walk. Why not? She's just a whore.

Lift your right arm.



Keep your hand there. Is that comfortable?


Answer truthfully to the best of your knowledge.

Is your name Gary Leon Ridgway?


He volunteered to take it.

Quiet, Haney.


Answer truthfully and to the best of your knowledge.

Is your name Gary Leon Ridgway?


What else you got on him?

Questioned again by the Port police in '82.

They found him parked by the field where Wim's skeleton was found.

Says he might've dated her, but he can't remember.

Answer truthfully and to the best of your knowledge.

Do you work at Kenworth Trucking?


Tell Downing to search his house again And this time look for souvenirs like jewelry and clothing and hair, teeth.

Anything that could've come from a victim. Right.

You should get started with that.

Will do, Mr. Keppel.

[door opens, closes]

As soon as they're done with him, Let's see if he'll give us a mouth swab.

With primer spots.

Yes. Yes, sir. That's my truck.

I, um, got it in, uh... '77, I think.

Hey, beautiful.

You're-- You're home. Is everything all right?

Yeah, yeah. We got a suspect.

I need a shower, and I gotta go back to work later, but not before I've had dinner with my wife.

Dad, I got this.


[Bundy] you should go to the Strip, Bob.

See what he sees.

[Keppel] you like weather like this, don't you?

'Cause you know most of the police are busy with the accidents that the bad weather brings, and the others are somewhere drinking coffee, staying dry.

The hunting's good, isn't it?

'Cause you know the only hookers out tonight... are desperate, don't you?

You son of a bitch.

So you troll.

And you find her.

And you know it's her...


because she's the one.

The chosen.

She belongs to me.

She belongs to me.

[no audible dialogue]

To me.

You're my subject.

My cargo.


Police! Police! Out of the car now! Get out of the car!

Get your-- Get your hands off! Get your hand off me!

You have no idea who I am! I don't care who you are!

Get those cuffs on him!

It's all right! He's a cop! Goddamn it!

He's a cop! Show him your badge!

You got a badge? Come on! It's all right, guys.

It's all right. It's all right.

Jesus! Come on. He's on the job.

All right, guys. Sorry, sorry. Thanks.

[cop] A badge on the job.

Kinda quiet, Dave. You all right?

I'm all right.

You're my partner. Talk to me.

What are you doing?

Why didn't you tell him you're a cop? I did.

After I yelled at you. Man!

That was scary, Bob.

Yeah, well-- listen to me.

Listen to me, Bob!

We have another problem.

Ridgway passed the polygraph.

Ridgway! You got company!

Gary? Yeah.

I'm Bob Keppel. Hi.

This is Dave Reichert. Remember him?

Someplace we can go and talk where it's quiet for just a minute?

Sure. A room over here.

It's, uh... it's about the polygraph, I guess.

Yeah, it's kinda-- I mean, I just wanna clear a couple things up with you.

Pretty busy day. This gonna take long?

Nah, maybe just five minutes. You'll be back on shift.

Well, you can, uh-- hey, hey, Riverman! Going up the creek this time!

Yeah, hey, killer, killer! Sorry about that.

You guys been here a lot, and they like to tease me.

I know it's a pain in the ass for you.

It's a pain in the ass for us. Yeah.

Everybody's fed up.

They're gonna disband the task force. Really?

Yeah, well, I mean, they're whores anyway, you know.

Yeah, but some of them are okay, though.

Oh, that's why you said you were fascinated with prostitutes.

I'm sorry. F-fascinated?

Yeah. You said you were fascinated with prostitutes, right?

Oh, yeah, well, that's, uh--

They-- They sell sex.

I mean, that's, uh-- That's kinda--

It's not normal, And yet they strut around like it's normal.

And, I mean, you know, they wear those clothes and...

I mean... what do you mean, Gary?

You know what I mean. [chuckles]

Yeah. No, I know. I know what you mean.

I can't believe it, some of the clothes those girls wear.


You ever rape anyone, Gary?


No, I wouldn't do that.

Rapists are... not me, okay?

Rapists are scum.

Okay. And that's not you.

No. I'm not that.



Thank you.


He's the perp. Just like that?

His reaction when I asked him if he raped anybody--

I'd react the same way, Bob.

No. You'd react like it was unthinkable.

And he reacted like he was afraid people were gonna think he's a bad person.

So what's the plan?

Take me to the airport.


Take me to the airport.

You're going back?


Why, Bob?

Why are you doing this to yourself, hmm?

Look, Bob, last night--

This is none of--

No, no, it is my business.

They say when you were working the Bundy case That you had some kind of breakdown--

Hey, look, they say wrong, all right?

Dave, you gotta crawl under rocks where the serials live, Then you gotta come back, you gotta tell people what you saw.

[engine starts]

Let's go.

[Keppel] I don't wanna be talked out of this.

What do I tell your daughter?

About what?

Damn. Okay. Just tell her I'm sorry and-- you know, I don't know what else I--

Sande, Bundy-- The appeal was denied, okay?

He's vulnerable.

So are you.

Well, that's-- that's unfair. I...

yeah, okay, maybe, but I--

I have to do this.

Okay, so there's a morality to murder.

Oh, sure.

I mean, you may not agree with what the Riverman does, But to understand, you gotta empathize with him.

And I mean real empathy, Bob, Not "let's have a cup of coffee and a cigarette and let's talk about it" bullshit.

I mean, these guys, they have to live with their urges, and they have to keep 'em secret.

You think that's easy?

To kill and keep yourself socially acceptable?

To be a serial killer and keep your day job?

Give credit to that, for being normal when--

When you're possessing your subject.

You saw, didn't you?

Tell me. Tell me what you saw.


Oh, come on, Bob.

And it belongs to me.

You felt it, didn't you?


Come on, tell me.

I was soft.

Soft as the rain.

Flowing like a river.


Ted, later.

No. Now. Tell me now, Bob.

I understand. I do. You know I do.

Oh, I get it. [scoffs]

You did something to her, didn't you?

It's okay, it's okay. I understand.

Oh! Whoa! [laughs]

Stop looking at me like that, man.

You're giving me the creeps.

Okay, okay.

Um... look, if you, um, if you talk... to the Florida Attorney General, he'll listen to you.

I mean, I'm not asking for clemency Or weekend furloughs or anything like that.

Just a reasonable amount of time to go over everything, Top to bottom, to give the families closure.

He'll recommend a stay, And the governor will grant it.

Hey, let's get real.

The governor doesn't care about you.

As a police investigator, I gotta assume you're gonna die on Tuesday.

You gotta start thinking about what you're gonna give law enforcement between now and Tuesday!

I wanna help you. I can't!

I gotta know some things about Seattle. Okay, okay, all right.


Good evening, Dave. What's up?

The search results were negative on Ridgway’s house and vehicles, And our surveillance of the Strip was busted by the 11:00 news.

Mm-Hmm. They can run the swab, but if they do, it'll consume the entire sample, So I told 'em to hold off and wait until we get further along with the DNA research.

Yeah, that's smart. Good thinking, Dave.

Yeah, yeah. How about you? You doing any good?

[Keppel] Yeah, you know, we're getting there.

[Reichert] Yeah, I think I do.

Good hunting, Bob.

Be safe, huh?

Be safe.

[keys jingle, gate unlocks]

[gate closes, locks]

So how do you want to proceed?

Well, uh...

I'm sure you're aware of the limitations we're under.

This is phase two of the death watch, and obviously that puts us under some kind of restraint.

Talking of which, how'd it go with the Attorney General?

I'm not gonna blow smoke up your ass, Ted.

Hope I know for a fact there's not much he's gonna intervene in Tuesday's proceedings, unless something really changes.

I've got an idea of the scope, but I'm only representing Washington here, so... let's start with Hawkins first.

The facts I have are basically what's available in the newspaper.

Missing from one location.

Never found.

Gee, this is, uh...

This is probably the hardest part. Um... [chuckles]


I don't know. Um...

Now we're gettin' right down to it.

Uh, we'll talk about it. It's, um... it's just I hope you understand It's not something I find easy to talk about after all this time.

No, I understand. You take your time.

What we have here is, um... is a situation where we have an individual who is, um... basically seeking to satisfy his urges.

And, um, in order to do that, He has to put his subject at ease. Um... so this guy, this entity, he, um... he puts her at ease. He jokes.

He makes her laugh.

Whoa! Take my advice. Don't ever sprain an ankle.



Want some help with that?

Oh, would you? That would be great.

Thanks. [sighs]

You have no idea how tired I am of dropping that.

I feel like such a klutz. [laughs]

My car is right over here.

My name's Georgeanne, but they call me George.

George. Wow.

That is such a cute name. And it suits you, too.

'Cause the entity is young. He's handsome.

He's not at all threatening.

And he has a V.W., needs room for his crutches.

Yeah, and, um... he has her now. His control is almost complete.

[Keppel] So he's her prince.

No, no, no. He's her savior.

And she's his... till she turns bad.

Tell me, what would you do, Bob?

Hmm? What would you do to her?

To her breasts, hmm?

And after her breasts, When you got down there to the holy of holies?

When did he fracture her skull?


Her skull was fractured. When did he do it?

'Cause he couldn't let her just talk there in the car.

That would've made her too familiar, wouldn't it?

So when did you fracture her skull?

You mean the entity.

Truth, Ted.

I've been giving you the truth, Bob.

Now it's time for you to talk about it. What, to you?

Well, somebody who understands.

Oh, you understand. That's a laugh.

What do you understand?

Did you have three family names, huh?

Were you illegitimate?

Were you called mommy's little brother?

Yeah. It hurts.

And hurt turns into rage.

And the rage grows and grows.

But you can't let it out because he's gotta be mommy's good little brother, or he'll get sent to grandpa's.

So he tries, but... he gets sent anyway.

But it's okay, it's okay. Grandpa doesn't beat on him.

He just locks him in the closet and turns out the light.

I'm sorry.

Oh, that's good.

I'm on death row, and you're sympathetic.

Bob. That's a lot of help,


do you have any idea what hell is?



You grow numb. you lose the ability to feel because the hurt and helplessness is too big for you to deal with.

You learn to mimic feelings so people will think you're just like 'em, but you're not.

You look for ways to... to get stronger and stronger with that feeling to feel human, you know?

Then you get into porn, soft-core at first, then the hard stuff.

And the fantasies grow, and they get stronger and stronger... till you can't sleep.

And you walk around, looking into windows, hunting for that feeling.

You say to yourself it's just a game, it's harmless, you'll never really do it.

Then one day... one day... it's not enough.




Next day you're sick, horrified at what you've done.

But excited, too, because you felt, for the first time. you tell yourself it's gonna stop, and...

For a little while, it does.

What really happened with Georgeanne?

You mean what did the entity do.

No. [presses button]


Not the entity. You.

'Cause you didn't talk her into the front seat, did you?

Let's-- Let's just go through it... step by step.

What happened?

Okay, what really happened?

You gotta tell me what happened, Ted.

How was she taken?

The time and the events. What were the circumstances at the time?

[presses button]

The time...

I think it was May or, or June.

It was a clear night.


She was... at the end of the alley.

Oh! Ohh!

Want some help?

Oh, sure.



It's a really big help.

My car's right over here.

They call me George.

Ted. Hi. I'm-- My name's I usually find a parking spot close to the library, but it's so crowded.

I guess people are booking it for finals.

Yeah, I was just there. I think the whole up’s there tonight.

Sure looked like it.

Well, here we are.

Thank you.

You've been a big help.

Oh, that's okay.

Oh, gosh. I'll get that for you.

[engine starts]

[George grunts]

I have trouble.

I have trouble with...

Pronunc-- [coughs]


I listen to tapes. Shut up.

Okay? Just shut up.


[speaking Spanish]



Please. Just shut up, okay?

Shut up.

I need a tutor. [laughs]


I have trouble, but you can help me with that.

That's why I hired you.

[speaking Spanish]

[George mumbles]

[incoherent mumbling]

[Ted mumbles]

[George speaking Spanish]

Shut up, shut up, shut up!

[George continues mumbling]

[Mumbling stops]

[Ted grunts, pants]



You know, it's kinda funny--

Well, not funny, but... odd, the kind of things people say under those circumstances.

She said, um... she thought she had a Spanish test the next day, and that, uh... she thought that I had taken her To help tutor her with her test.

It's kinda odd.

Odd thing to say.


[clears throat]

I'm feeling kinda tired.

Can I be alone now?

What did you do to her, Ted?


I was scared. I panicked.

I drove away. I threw things out of the window.

The tire iron, the rope. Clothes.

Her clothes. Sure.

I didn't want to, um--

You took her clothes off. You stayed with her.

All night. So what did you do to her?

Nothing. Nothing.

Look... I don't wanna talk about this right now.

Ted... you stripped her down, and you had sex with the corpse.

Why? No, no, I never said that.

Why'd you remove the head? What?

'Cause we found her head. We never found her body. What happened?

I don't wanna talk about this.

Ted, you cut off her head with a hacksaw, and then...

Then you moved it to a different place.

You took it back to your apartment.

What is your problem, Bob?

You deaf?

I said... I don't wanna talk about it.

We found four skulls on Taylor Mountain.

They'd all decomposed at the same rate

'cause you kept 'em in your apartment and then you dumped 'em at the same time.

So why'd you keep 'em?

It's because the corpse is just as important as live prey.

Isn't it?

It's... complete control.

It's possession.

So tell me how it's possession.

You feel the... the last bit of breath leaving their body.

You're looking into their eyes, and... basically a person in that situation... is a God.

You possess them... and they shall forever be a part of you.

And the grounds where you kill 'em or left 'em becomes sacred to you.

And you will always return to them.

So when you go back, what do you see?

Her skin.

You admire that...

'cause it changes color...

From yellow to blue, then purple, While their fingernails had turned black.

Arousing, isn't it?

And it makes you want to interact with the body.

You had sex with the corpse.

No, no, no, I never said that.

What'd you keep the heads for?

What? What are you talking about?

You had to keep 'em for a reason.

I-I-I... what for?

T-T-To remind me of my power, okay?

And how do you do that?

By beating off to them.

Beating off to the skulls.


Is that what you wanted to hear?

So you can see what kind of a freak I am?

Go ahead. Tell me.

Tell me!

[Keppel] Bundy talked for four days straight.

In the end, he confessed to the unsolved murders of the eight Seattle women, including three more in Washington that weren't on our books, plus another 19 in Utah, Colorado, Florida, Oregon, Idaho and California, bringing the total to 30 in all.

Why are you going?

Hey, Bob, I still have more to tell you.

Please, Bob.

You're a hunter just like me.

We're the same!

I'm you, you're me! Admit it!

I still matter, Keppel!

I still matter!

[Keppel] Bundy talked.

He talked to show himself that he was still important.

Still in control.

But he wasn't.

I knew these weren't the answers that the families had hoped for, But on a certain level, we were grateful that we knew.

Two days after our final interview, Theodore Robert Bundy was electrocuted as scheduled at 7:00 in the morning.

A murderer who couldn't even control his tears at the end.

Sande understood the price I was paying for my work with serials.

And it cost her, too.

Downing was promoted to Captain and cut back the task force.

Dave Reichert stayed with it till he had to move on.

But he never forgot, And he made sure no one else ever forgot.

Years later, the sample taken from the cotton swab Was analyzed using new DNA technology And led to the capture of the green river killer.

Gary Leon Ridgway was arrested and charged with the murders of Mills, Chapman and Hinds, and later confessed to 57 more killings, the greatest number of victims of any serial killer in the history of the United States.

I, uh, I killed so many women, I have a hard time keeping 'em straight.

I placed most of the bodies in groups I called "clusters,"

And I liked to drive by the clusters and think about the women that I placed there.

I thought I was doing you guys a favor... killing... killing prostitutes because here you can't control 'em, and I can.

I, uh, had the answer.

If-- If I went and, and raped somebody, That is not-- that is not what I would do. No.

They are low on my category of people.

I'm not a rapist, no. I'm a murderer.

I'm sorry for doing it, But I wasn't, uh...

I wasn't killing a person.