Man receives minimum of 183 years in prison for sexual assault
January 30, 2018
A man convicted of sexually assaulting a foreign exchange student in South Lake Tahoe in 2015 has been sentenced to 183 years to life in prison.
Judge Kenneth Melikian sentenced Manuel Ovidio Ramos-Munoz on Friday, Jan. 19, according to the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office.
In November, a jury found 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 sexual assault of the victim — a 22-year-old Macedonian exchange student who came to work in Tahoe during the summer of 2015.
According to the DA, the victim had only been in the country for a little more than a week when, on June 11, 2015, she was sitting on the front steps of her hotel room talking on the phone. That was when “Ramos-Munoz snuck up behind her and put a knife to her throat,” according to the DA.
The Tribune previously reported that Ramos-Munoz admitted to forcing the victim, at knife point, from the area just outside her hotel room at the Big Pines Mountain House of Tahoe into a secluded area where he sexually and physically assaulted her.
According to the DA, Ramos-Munoz threatened to kill the victim if she did not remain silent. He repeatedly and violently physically and sexually assaulted the victim, causing injuries to her head, face and body.
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Judge Melikian, according to the DA’s office, called Ramos-Munoz's actions "beyond reprehensible" and stated that on the day of the crime Ramos-Munoz had "put the victim in hell." The judge added the victim is still suffering from the events of that day.
The South Lake Tahoe Police Department and El Dorado County District Attorney's Office investigated the case, which was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Jamie Pesce and Assistant District Attorney Joseph Alexander. Detective Doug Sentell, Investigator Ken Barber and Victim Witness Advocate Yolanda McGillivray assisted with the case.
CORRECTION: This story has been corrected to state Friday, not Monday, Jan. 19.