November 09, 2017
On November 8, 2017, after a three week trial, a jury found Manuel Ovidio Ramos-Munoz guilty of seven felony counts, including kidnapping for the purpose of committing a sexual assault, as well as six additional counts and numerous special allegations relating to the subsequent sexual assault of the victim.
On June 11, 2015, the 22-year-old victim had recently arrived from Macedonia to work for the summer as an exchange student when she was taken at knife point by Ramos-Munoz from the steps of her hotel room. Ramos-Munoz forced the victim into the dark, secluded parking lot adjacent to her hotel and repeatedly sexually and physically assaulted her, resulting in numerous injuries to the young victim.
The case was investigated by South Lake Tahoe Police Department Detective Doug Sentell, with assistance from additional officers with the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, as well as the District Attorney's Office. The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Jamie Pesce and Assistant District Attorney Joseph Alexander. Investigator Ken Barber and Victim Witness Advocate Yolanda McGillivray assisted during the prosecution. The jury heard testimony from the victim, as well as officers from the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, a criminalist from the California Department of Justice, a Doctor and SART Nurse from the BEAR Clinics in both Sacramento and Reno, members of defendant's family, the defendant's former co-workers and a District Attorney Investigator.
After the verdicts, the Honorable Kenneth
Melikian remanded Ramos-Munoz into the El Dorado County jail with no bail
pending the January 19, 2018, sentencing hearing. The defendant faces
a maximum sentence of over 150 years to life in prison.
District Attorney Vern Pierson stated, "Our hearts go out to the victim and her family. We are pleased that we were able to secure justice on her behalf and that this defendant will spend the rest of his life in prison for this disturbing and horrific crime."