Richard Ramirez Essay, Research Paper
Serial murderer Richard Ramirez claims to be the right hand man of Satan. During the time of the Roman Empire, a carpenter named Jesus claimed to be the son of God. Many ridiculed him and others believed him. Several people, according to oral traditions, believed Jesus was simply a man who had gone mad. Others believed in him and became his followers. He was given a death sentence ordered by Pontius Pilot on behalf of the people. It seemed the majority thought that Jesus should die. There was no way to prove or disprove Jesus assertion that he was the Son of God. There was no way in the time of Christ to come up with concrete, scientific evidence about his claim and still there is no way now to verify or refute Richard Ramirez claim that he is working on behalf of Satan. Any Christian person who believes in God has to be open to the possibility that Richard Ramirez could be an otherworldly soul sent to us by some unseen power.
Since there is no way this claim can be denied or confirmed with absolute certainty, Ramirez can only be judged as a human being. And as such, he was tried, convicted and sentenced to death. If we look at Richard as only a human being, we need to understand what made him who he is today. Inherent biological and psychological traits caused Richard to commit his crimes and further research could prevent another human life from being taken by a violent killer if we lock Richard up for years of study instead of sending him to the gas chamber.
Richard was arrested for thirteen murders, five attempted murders, six rapes, three lewd acts on children, two kidnappings, three acts of forced oral copulation, four counts of sodomy, five robberies and fourteen burglaries. He was convicted on forty-six of those counts at 2:20 on September 20th, 1989, in a Los Angeles county courtroom in California. He was subsequently given the death sentence on October 3rd of that same year. At first Richard was adamant about not pleading insanity as his defense. He did not want people to believe that he was insane. He was more interested in people knowing that he was a devout Satanist, and that Satan would protect him, and watch over him.
Now, after spending many years in the appeals process, Richard has recently
decided to plead insanity, in hopes that his sentence will be overturned. This is especially profound because initially, Ramirez would not confess or deny his crimes. All of sudden, he is willing to admit guilt under the context that he was insane.
Richard was born in 1960 in El Paso Texas, to parents of meager economical means. His father, Julian Ramirez, a Mexican immigrant, and his mother, Mercedes Ramirez, a Mexican American citizen, both worked long hours every day to support their five children. Julian was an abusive parent as his father was before him. If Mercedes or any of the children did anything that Julian considered wrong they were physically beaten. All of the children had medical difficulties during early childhood. These medical problems were believed to be the result of two things. First, the US Government throughout the 1950 s was conducting nuclear bomb tests in nearby New Mexico, and as it happened, the fallout from the bombs was carried by the wind to settle in El Paso, on Grise 3
the landscape, cattle and people infecting milk, meat and water. All of the Ramirez children were born with problems ranging from respiratory difficulty to Collier s disease (an illness in which the bones grow into a curved shape, causing deformity or handicap.) Rueben, Richard s older brother was permanently disabled by this disease. Secondly, in 1959 during her pregnancy with Richard, Mercedes was working at Tony Lama s boot factory mixing pigments and chemicals used on the boots. She was mixing chemicals such as benzene, xylene and toluene and unfortunately in that era, the toxicity of these chemicals was unknown. She gave birth to Richard on February 29th, 1960 at 2:07 am.
While in the fifth grade, Richard was diagnosed with temporal lobe epilepsy. He was having grand mal seizures in school. Other than the epilepsy Richard had grown out of his other medical ailments and was considered to be a healthy although hyper and aggressive child.
Even though Richard had four older siblings to fool around with- Joseph, Ruth, Robert and Ruben, he spent all of his time with his cousin Michael. Michael had the most influence over Richard. Michael was a Vietnam veteran who enjoyed killing and raping the Vietnamese women for his entertainment. According to Richard, when he was twelve years old his cousin Michael showed him photographs of himself raping a Vietnamese woman. Going through a sequence of detailed photographs, Richard came to the last picture. The picture was of the same rape victims severed head, held by Michael in his hand, positioned so that the victim s mouth was placed around his penis. Michael taught Richard how to hold and shoot a gun, as well as how to maneuver a knife. After a few months of Michaels return from the war and these types of outings together, one-day another tragedy finally occurred.