CBS LA 2 – Oxnard Family Wants Answers In Death Of Son In Police Custody
Attorney Ron Bamieh (left) stands besides family members of Robert Ramirez during a news conference Thursday in Ventura. Ramirez died after a struggle with Oxnard police last month.
- Relatives of a 26-year-old Oxnard man who died after a police struggle last month are claiming he was beaten by officers and are demanding an independent investigation.
Robert Ramirez’s family became concerned after viewing his body and hired attorney Ron Bamieh. The family and Bamieh held a news conference Thursday on the issue.
Ramirez died June 23 after police responded to a report of a man suffering from a possible drug overdose in the 1100 block of South L Street in Oxnard.
- The incident is being investigated by the Oxnard police homicide unit and Ventura County District Attorney’s Office, which is standard procedure. The seven officers involved were placed on administrative leave but returned to work June 27, said Monica Munoz, Oxnard police spokeswoman.
- During the news conference, Ramirez’s mother, Teresa, said her son was loved by his family. While he struggled with drugs and was once in prison, the family is trying to find out what led to his death.
“It is easy to discount the lives of those who have issues like Robert did,” she said while sitting alongside her daughter, son, niece and grandson. “However, we … will not be silent and diminish the life of our son by excusing inappropriate behavior that may have caused or led to his death.”
She said she hopes the officers involved in the incident will speak up about what happened that night.
“I would hope that those involved in Robert’s death would have the courage to speak the truth about their actions and the actions of their fellow officers,” she said.
Private investigators working for Bamieh examined evidence and reviewed video and audio from witnesses, the attorney said. They found Ramirez had bruises all over his body at the time of his death, Bamieh said.
- Bamieh said the FBI is investigating the case.
“The FBI is aware of the allegations and is reviewing the matter to determine if a federal investigation is warranted,” Ari DeKofsky, a spokeswoman in the FBI’s Los Angeles office, said Thursday.
Undated photo of Robert Ramirez who died last month during a struggle with police. Ramirez is with his mother Teresa Ramirez.