Richard Ramirez, known in the media as “The Night Stalker,” engaged in a horrific spree of murder, rape, kidnap and torture in Northern and Southern California from 1984-85. His first known victim, 9-year-old Mei Leung, was found dead in a San Francisco hotel basement in April 1984, but it wasn’t until a DNA match in 2009 that Ramirez was linked to the crime. Ramirez terrorized and mutilated his victims, which ranged in age from 6 to 83 years old. One, 44-year-old Maxine Zazzara, had her eyes gouged out and carvings on her breast. Another, 83-year-old Malvial Keller, was beaten with a hammer. After murdering Maxon Kneiding and his wife, Lela, Ramirez mutilated their bodies.
Ramirez was finally captured in August 1985 following a shooting in Mission Viejo. In 1989, Ramirez was sent to Death Row after being convicted of 13 counts of murder, 5 attempted murders, 11 sexual assaults and 14 burglaries.