After an elderly couple was callously murdered in Lewis County, Washington, their killers would walk free for 26 years. One of them would never live to face justice.
Ed, 81, and Minnie Maurin, 83, had been married for 24 years and lived on a 120-acre farm in Ethel where they grew and sold Christmas trees. The year was 1985 and Ed and Minnie were ready to celebrate yet another Christmas together. They never did. In a cruel twist, they were found dead on Christmas Eve.
Who killed Ed and Minnie Maurin?
John and Rick Riffe forced the Maurins out of their home, and into the couple’s car, where the brothers then took them to a bank in nearby Chehalis. It was then that they forced Ed to withdraw nearly $9,000, which officials believed the Riffes would use as drug money. After the brothers got what they wanted, they shot and killed the elderly couple with a shotgun that had been given to Rick in 1984. In 1986, Rick would finally return the gun, now a murder weapon, to its owner with its barrel sawed off.
When were Rick and John Riffe arrested?
Even though they were persons of interest, the Riffe brothers evaded charges for nearly three decades due to a lack of evidence. Finally, in 2012, Lewis County authorities had what they needed to make two long-awaited arrests. The Riffes had been living in Alaska since 1987, which made questioning them impossible. Before the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office bought their tickets to Alaska, they learned that John Riffe died merely a week prior.
Rick Riffe would finally see the justice he had managed to elude for nearly 27 years. He was sentenced to 103 years in prison. After his sentencing, authorities charged him with another crime from decades prior, the sexual abuse of the daughter of a woman Riffe was living with.
The 12 Deadliest Serial Killers in Washington State’s Bloody History
Every state is known for something. Florida has swamps and beautiful weather, Iowa has wrestling and corn, New York has Manhattan and Brooklyn-style pizza, Maryland has crabcakes. Washington has apples, wine, IPAs, and serial killers. This article is not meant to glorify these evil people in any way, just shed some light on a bizarre Washington truth. From Bundy to the Green River Killer, these are twelve of the deadliest killers in Washington state history.