Man Sentenced in East County Attempted Murder Case

San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan announced today that Pablo E. Ramirez, who was found guilty by a jury of three counts of attempted murder, was sentenced to 116 years-to-life in prison for attempting to kill his girlfriend and her two juvenile daughters in September 2021.

Two years ago, 52-year-old Ramirez entered the bedroom of his stepdaughters and began shooting. He had already shot their mother, Natalie Ortiz, and left her for dead, bleeding in their bedroom. He then shot her 15-year-old daughter and next aimed for her 11-year-old. His actions left the teenager a quadriplegic. The horrific crime left a lasting impression on the East County community.

“Pablo Ramirez destroyed a family and stole the hopes and dreams of a young woman who was just beginning her life,” DA Stephan said. “Today’s sentence provides a measure of justice and will hold this callous defendant accountable for his malicious acts.”

During the terrifying incident, the 11-year-old girl was able to escape to a neighbor’s house to call 911. Ramirez shot the 15-year-old girl in the elbow while she was still in bed. Then, while she was attempting to flee the home through a back door, Ramirez shot her in the back, leaving her paralyzed.

The survival of the victims was due to the immediate response of law enforcement and the exceptional trauma care provided to the victims. Law enforcement responded to the home within four minutes of the first 911 call, rushed into the home and immediately provided life saving measures to the mother and her 15-year-old daughter. The trauma surgeon testified that Ortiz was minutes from death. Without the heroic and expedient response by deputies and trauma surgeons she would have died from multiple gunshot wounds.

On July 27 after one day deliberation, a jury convicted Ramirez of all counts and allegations, including attempted murder, attempted manslaughter and possession of a firearm by a felon.

Deputy DA Alexandra Lorens prosecuted this case.