The youngest victim of the infamous Green River Killer, who pleaded guilty to murdering 48 women, has been identified 37 years after her remains were found.

Evil Gary Ridgway is serving life without parole at the Washington State Penitentiary for a murder spree in Seattle, Washington during the 1980s.

He was arrested in 2001 for the crimes and pleaded guilty to killing 48 women in 2003, but later claimed the number was closer to 71 and also said he had sex with them beforehand.

Several of his victims had remained unidentified until Monday, January 25 2021, when the King County Sheriff’s Office announced that it had used genealogy to track them down.

Wendy Stephens, a 14-year-old runaway from Denver, was identified as the youngest of Ridgway’s victims.

Her remains had been found 27 years ago near a baseball field in Seattle in March 1984 by the groundskeeper’s dog.

The dog had discovered a leg bone and brought it back to his owner who alerted police.

Along with a statement, the King’s Sheriff’s Office released a picture of Wendy, who was snapped bright-eyed and smiling at the camera.

Detectives said they had used genealogy, the study of families, family history, and tracing lineages, to identify Wendy.

King County Prosecutor, Dan Satterbeg, said: "Ridgway’s murderous spree left a trail of profound grief for so many families of murdered and missing women.

"We are thankful that Wendy Stephens’ family will now have answers to their enormous loss suffered nearly 40 years ago."

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Nonprofit DNA Doe Project, which uses publicly available DNA databases to find relatives of unidentified victims, assisted law enforcement in tracking down Wendy's family.

Ridgway entered a guilty plea to 48 charges of aggravated first degree murder as part of a plea bargain in a bid to spare himself from the death penalty.

In his confession, he acknowledged that he targeted prostitutes because they were "easy to pick up" and that he "hated most of them."

He later said murdering young women was his "career."

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