Home » Former Sheriff Who Nabbed ‘Green River Killer’ to Run for Washington Governor

Former Sheriff Who Nabbed ‘Green River Killer’ to Run for Washington Governor

A former sheriff and congressman known for his work that led to the capture of the “Green River Killer” has entered the race to become Washington’s next governor.

Former King County Sheriff and U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert, 72, filed campaign paperwork with the state Public Disclosure Commission on June 30 to run as a Republican candidate to replace Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee, who is not seeking a fourth term. 

Reichert, who has not officially announced his campaign, joins a growing field of gubernatorial candidates, including a pair of prominent Democrats — Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Washington Public Lands Commissioner Hilary Franz. Republican candidates include Yakima doctor Raul Garcia and Richland School Board member Semi Bird. 

Reichert served two terms as sheriff and was the first detective assigned to the Green River killings, named for the river where the first bodies were found in 1982. Gary Ridgway, who killed 49 women, was arrested and convicted in 2003 during Reichert’s second term. 

Ridgway said he likely committed more than 71 murders and is serving a sentence of life without parole.

Reichert was elected to Congress in 2004 and retired after his seventh term in 2019. 

While in Congress, he worked to expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area and introduced national bills to improve the foster care system and combat sex trafficking. 

Inslee, the longest-serving governor in office in the U.S. and only the second Washington governor to be elected to three consecutive terms, announced in May he would not seek a fourth term.

A primary election is set for August 2024, leading to a general election in November.