Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Night 66° Partly Cloudy

Former Pasco officer suspected in 1986 Spokane murder charged in unrelated rape case

A former Pasco police officer who is a suspect in a 1986 murder in Spokane remains free though he was charged on Thursday in a separate rape case. Richard J. Aguirre’s attorney, Scott Johnson, said his client is innocent in both cases. Aguirre was charged with third-degree rape on Thursday in Franklin County. The Tri-City Herald reported that court documents in the rape case show that a woman told police that she and Aguirre shared a bed at Aguirre’s house. Documents say that the woman reported that Aguirre sexually assaulted her, but that she was unable “push him off or say no because of shock and the effects of alcohol,” the documents say, according to the newspaper. Tests found his DNA on her underwear, and Aguirre told police he had no idea how it could have gotten there. Johnson said that the women’s perceptions as a result of alcohol consumption are an important factor in the case. The DNA test conducted as a result of the rape allegation is what linked Aguirre to the murder in Spokane. Ruby Doss was found strangled on Jan. 30, 1986 near East Sprague Avenue, where she had been working as a prostitute. “It’s really hard to remember a lot of specific details from 30 years ago, but he believes he was an acquaintance of Ms. Doss,” Johnson said on Friday. Johnson declined to say if Aguirre was a customer of hers or to further explain their relationship. At the time of Darby’s murder, Aguirre was in the Air Force and stationed at Fairchild Air Force Base, Johnson said. In 1987, he was transferred to South Korea. Johnson said Aguirre had not planned to resign as a result of the Franklin County case, but opted to after Spokane police notified him that his DNA made him a suspect in the 1986 strangulation. “He just believed Pasco police are going through enough,” Johnson said, referring to the controversial police shooting in Pasco in February. “He was able to retire for the good of everybody.”
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.