Richard Ramirez was an American serial killer known as the “Night Stalker” who terrorized California in the 1980s with his crimes, which included murders and sexual assaults.
Ramirez’s reign of terror is chronicled in the 2021 Netflix four-part docuseries Night Stalker: The Hunt for a Serial Killer. Many fans of that show are wondering whether Ramirez is alive. What happened to the man known as the Night Stalker?
Ramirez was one of America’s most baffling serial killers because he didn’t have a modus operandi when it came to victim type. He was not discriminate. He killed adult men and women and kidnapped and sexually assaulted small boys and girls. The Netflix series chronicles the recollections of the detectives who brought him to justice.
However, Richard Ramirez is no longer alive.
Ramirez died at the age of 53 in 2013, according to The New York Times.
Here’s what you need to know:
Ramirez Died of Cancer in a California Hospital
According to The New York Times, Ramirez died in a hospital in Greenbrae, California. He had been on death row at the San Quentin prison.
The Los Angeles Times reported that Ramirez died of “natural causes.”
According to the Associated Press, the coroner later said that Ramirez died of “B-cell lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system.” Other “significant conditions” included “chronic substance abuse and hepatitis C,” the AP reported, the latter likely caused by intravenous drug use.
Lieutenant Keith Boyd, assistant chief deputy coroner, told the AP: “That’s chronic drug use prior to incarceration. There’s nothing to support any kind of drug use while incarcerated.”
Ramirez Claimed He Was Motivated to Murder by Satan
According to The New York Times, Ramirez “claimed to be inspired by Satan” and to have killed at least 14 people. His death was announced by the prison system. Britannica reports he was convicted of 13 murders in addition to other crimes.
In court, the Los Angeles Times reported, he once said, “You don’t understand me. You are not expected to. You are not capable of it. I am beyond your experience. I will be avenged. Lucifer dwells in us all.”
Ramirez was captured, the Times reported, by a group of residents who recognized him as he tried to steal a car.
According to Britannica, Ramirez was born Ricardo Leyva Muñoz Ramirez in El Paso, Texas. He died on June 7, 2013. He was exposed to violence in two ways while growing up: his Vietnam War-veteran cousin showed him photos of murdered and tortured Vietnamese women, and he witnessed the shooting of his cousin’s wife, Britannica reported.
Ramirez began burglarizing homes, eventually moved to Los Angeles, and committed his first murder, of a 79-year-old woman, in 1984, the site reported. The Night Stalker term came because he was known to break into people’s homes to murder them; he also left occult and Satanic symbols at some of the crime scenes, Britannica reported, adding that the judge at his trial said that Ramirez’s crimes showed “cruelty, callousness and viciousness beyond any human understanding.”
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