Sign the Petition: Justice for Luis Ramirez

It is time for the United States Department of Justice to intervene and conduct an independent and comprehensive investigation of the brutal murder of Luis Ramirez in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania. The Justice Department must send a strong message that violence targeting Latinos will not be tolerated and will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

We need you, and so does Luis Ramirez’s family. Will you join me in making sure the DOJ does its job and brings justice to Shenandoah, Pennsylvania?

Click here now and urge the DOJ to investigate this hate crime today.

On July 12, 2008, Luis Ramirez, a 25-year-old Mexican immigrant residing in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, was tragically beaten and stomped to death by a group of teens as he walked through the town. Witnesses overheard anti-Mexican and ethnic epithets shouted by his assailants during the violent attack. A retired Philadelphia police officer testified during the preliminary hearing that she heard one of the defendants yell, "Tell your [expletive] Mexican friends to get the [expletive] out of Shenandoah or you’ll be [expletive] laying next to him."

On Friday, May 1, 2009, a jury in Schuylkill County found two of the defendants accused of beating the 25-year-old, father of two, not guilty of third degree murder and ethnic intimidation. Despite the mounting evidence of a hate-driven attack, the jury convicted them on charges of simple assault. The jury's conclusion is an outrage. Most shocking is the recent news article describing the Jury Foreman’s view that trial of the defendants was biased because of racism and prejudice he noted among his fellow jurors. Luis Ramirez was brutally murdered and even in death, Ramirez remains a victim of extreme racism, which denies his family the justice they deserve.

Now, we need your help in calling upon the Civil Rights Division of the United States Department of Justice to conduct a thorough and comprehensive federal investigation surrounding the fatal beating of Luis Ramirez and to bring appropriate federal hate crime charges against his assailants.

Click here now and urge the DOJ to investigate this hate crime today.


Henry Solano
President and General Counsel

Copyright 2009 MALDEF — Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund