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Texas man found not guilty of murder at Burnsville hotel on mental health grounds

Ricky Eloy Ramirez was charged with second-degree murder in the death of 27-year-old Sheldon Jeremy Williams in July.
Ricky Eloy Ramirez

A Texas man previously charged with murder after the fatal shooting of a South Carolina man in Burnsville last summer has been found not guilty due to mental illness.

Ricky Eloy Ramirez, 25, of Houston, was charged with second-degree murder in July for the death of Sheldon Jeremy Williams, 27. 

Ramirez pleaded not guilty by way of mental illness and waived his right to a jury trial.

And on Saturday, the Dakota County Attorney’s Office announced that Ramirez was found not guilty of the charges. He was found to be mentally ill at the time of the incident and did not know what he did was wrong.

On July 23 of last year, Burnsville police were called to the Burnsville Inn & Suites on reports of shots fired. A front desk employee told them they'd heard gunshots and that there was a man running around the second floor saying a person had been shot dead.

At the scene, they found Ramirez standing with a gun near his feet. He was handcuffed and told police, "Right door last end, they have an AR and they have 100 more.”

When asked who had been shot, Ramirez replied, "Him right there. I shot him.”

Police then saw Williams, who had suffered a gunshot wound to the head. He was declared dead at the scene.

Police later learned Ramirez had traveled from Texas to Minnesota with his girlfriend and his father to work on July 21. The three of them were staying at the hotel. 

Ramirez had been acting normally until July 22, his girlfriend told police. He then became paranoid that someone was trying to get him and that the government was coming after him, the criminal complaint states.

He was also acting paranoid the day of the shooting, his father stated.

Video surveillance from the hotel shows Ramirez walking around the hotel near Williams’ room. When Williams opens the door, Ramirez can be seen shooting at him. Williams did not appear to have a weapon on him.

A judge ordered that Ramirez be transferred to a “secure mental health facility,” according to the announcement. 

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