Huffpost Crime

Rick Riffe Arrested In 27-Year-Old Cold Case Murder Investigation Of Wilhelmina and Edward Maurin

Posted: Updated:
Lewis County Sheriff's Office
Lewis County Sheriff's Office

Twenty-seven years later, police say they have their man.

Authorities from Washington state arrived in Alaska on Sunday to arrest Rick Riffe, the primary suspect in a 1985 double-murder of an elderly couple, according to the Lewis County Sheriff's Office.

On Dec. 19, 1985, the family of Wilhelmina "Minnie" Maurin and Edward "Ed" Maurin, then 83 and 81 years old, reported the couple missing. The Maurin's missed the next day's family holiday party and their bodies were found five days later, evidently shot dead and dragged through the woods in Chehalis, Wash.

Dennis Hadaller, the couple's son, vowed to one day solve the mystery.

"At their funeral, I laid my hand on their casket and I said, 'I will find out who did this,'" he said in a press conference, according to ABC News.

Police now say that Rick Riffe, 53, and his now deceased brother, John, "kidnapped the Maurins from their residence and drove them to the bank, forcing Ed to withdraw $8,500 in cash," Lewis County Sheriff Steve Mansfield said in a statement.

The brothers were the primary suspects throughout an investigation that for more than two decades struggled to gain traction.

"Detectives feel many witnesses did not come forward during the time of the initial investigation due to being fearful of the Riffe brothers and possible retaliation for speaking out," Mansfield also said.

The Riffe brothers moved to Alaska in 1987. John passed away one week before the Lewis County Sheriff's Office made arrangements to travel north and make their arrest, according to the statement.

Rick Riffe now awaits extradition to Washington where he will stand trial for murder.

Around the Web

1985 Washington Cold Case Murder of Elderly Couple Solved ...

Alaska man arrested in 1985 murder of elderly - KCPQ

Man Arrested in King Salmon for Washington Cold Case Murders ...

Alaskan arrested in 1985 double murder of elderly - Alaska Dispatch

Arrest Made In 1985 Lewis County Double Slayings « CBS Seattle

Detectives make arrest in 1985 murder of elderly couple | ...

Alaska man arrested for 1985 murders of Lewis County couple ...