Richard drew the five-point pentagram, a symbol sometimes associated with Satanism, on his own hand. At his trial, he would shout “Hail Satan!” in open court. Ramírez was a big fan of hard rock and heavy metal bands that sang about hell and the devil. He was said to be a fan of AC/DC and, in particular, their song “Night Prowler”
Richard Ramirez is a killer who raped and tortured many of his victims, who were variously shot, stabbed and bludgeoned with hammers. Pentagrams were found at some of the crime scenes and scrawled on one woman’s thigh. One victim was made to swear her love for Satan.
Richard Ramírez is an American serial killer, sex offender and burglar awaiting execution on California’s death row at San Quentin State Prison. He was born on February 29, 1960 in El Paso, Texas. The media dubbed the unknown serial killer active in Los Angeles, California before his arrest. The “Night Stalker” following his arrest, sensationalist reporting of his apparent interest in the occult and Satanism was common.
In Los Angeles, Ramirez did odd jobs as well as he worked as a car mechanic. He was fascinated with ‘Satanism’ and would play the rock band AC/DC’s song ‘Night Prowler’ on his stereo for hours on end. In June 1984, his first murder occurred. At late night through an unlocked window, his modus operandi was to break into his victim’s house. Then he would threaten them in their beds with either a gun or another weapon. His youngest victim only 6 years and his oldest was 84 year old. Sometimes he would just abduct young girls, sexually molest them and then let them go in between his murders.
On March 17, 1985, He began killing again. Ramirez only wounded one of his victim’s who survived to give the authorities a desciption of her assaillant – tall, hispanic, curly hair, bulging eyes and wide spaced rotting teeth! With local dentists the police began to check the killer because they believed their killer needed to have major dental work done. Mostly, around the Montery Park area of Los Angeles Ramirez had done his targets.
He beat a man to death and then carved out his wife’s eyes and took them with him on March 27, 1985 in Whitier. He left satanic pentagrams on his victim’s body and on the walls On May 29, 1985. And he also killed a total of 5 victims in 2 different locations on July 20, 1985
Following is the Ramirez’s Killing Spree Terrorized Los Angeles:
Ramirez’s 1985 killing and rape spree continued:
- June 27 – Ramirez raped a 6-year-old girl in Arcadia.
- June 28 – Patty Higgins, age 32, was beaten and her throat slit.
- July 2 – Mary Cannon, age 75, was beaten and her throat slit.
- July 5 – Deidre Palmer, age 16, survived being beaten with a tire iron.
- July 7 – Joyce Lucille Nelson, 61, was bludgeoned to death.
- July 7 – Linda Fortuna, 63, was attacked and Ramirez tried to rape her, but failed.
- July 20 – Maxson Kneiling, 66, and his wife Lela, also 66, were shot and their corpses, mutilated.
- July 20, Chitat Assawahem, 31, was shot and his wife Sakima, 29, was beaten then forced to perform oral sex. Ramirez then collected $30,000 in valuables, but before leaving, he sodomized the couple’s eight-year-old son.
- August 6 – Ramirez shot both Christopher Petersen, 38, and his wife, Virginia, 27, in the head. Both somehow survived.
- August 8 – Ramirez shot Ahmed Zia, 35, and raped and sodomized his wife, Suu Kyi, 28, and forced her to perform oral sex on him.
On Aug. 24, 1985, Ramirez traveled 50 miles south of Los Angeles, and broke into the home of Bill Carns, 29, and his fiancée, Inez Erickson, 27. Ramirez shot Carns in the head and raped Erickson. He demanded she swear her love for Satan and afterwards, forced her to perform oral sex on him. He then tied her and left. Erickson struggled to the window and saw the car Ramirez was driving.
A teenager wrote down the license plate number of the same car, after noticing it cruising suspiciously in the neighborhood.
The information from Erickson and the young man enabled police to locate the abandoned car, and get fingerprints from inside. A computer match was made of the prints, and identification of the Night Stalker became known. On August 30, 1985, the arrest warrant for Richard Ramirez was issued and his picture released to the public.
“That summer of ’85 was intense and unbearable. We’d already lived through the two Hillside Stranglers a few years before, but this was worse. This was truly horrifying.”
The Night Stalker went on a bloody spree that resulted in the sadistic, brutal deaths of more than a dozen people from 1984-85, and Guerrero remembers it all too well.
“In East L.A., where I grew up, it was terrible,” he said. “The Night Stalker created a profound loss of freedom and sanity. Nobody could sleep at night. It was the hottest summer on record, you had to keep your windows closed for all hours, and the randomness of the murders scared everyone in my neighborhood. You never knew where he would strike. It was oppressive to the point of near madness.”
On Aug. 31, 1985, the Night Stalker saga came crashing to a close within a mile of Guerrero’s home. This time, the satanic killer became a victim himself as a community came together to give chase and capture him as he was in the midst of inflicting more crime.
“Two things you never mess with in a Mexican community: cars and women,” Guerrero said. “Ramirez did both and he paid the price.”
That day, Ramirez had returned to Los Angeles by bus after visiting his brother in Tucson, Ariz. A recent fingerprint match on a stolen car had made Ramirez a prime suspect in the killings.
He knew the heat was on when he saw his picture on the cover of several newspapers.
In nearby East Los Angeles, he tried to steal a car belonging to a man named Faustino Pinon. What he didn’t realize was that Pinon was under the car, working on the transmission.
The two men fought for control of the car, it crashed and Ramirez ran off on foot.