Luis Ramirez, 42, was executed by lethal injection on 20 October 2005 in Huntsville, Texas for the murder-for-hire of a 29-year-old man.
On 8 April 1999, Edward Bell, 37, phoned Nemicio Nandin, a San Angelo fireman who had a part-time job as a washer and dryer repairman, to come to his house in Tom Green county to repair a broken dryer. When Nandin arrived at the residence, Bell placed him in handcuffs and took him to a chicken coop on the property. Bell then shot Nandin in the head twice with a shotgun. After burying the victim's body in a shallow grave, Bell drove Nandin's truck to a local store and left it there.
When Nandin failed to show up for work, he was reported missing. His body was found on 17 April. The house where the murder took place was owned by Lana Riordan, but Bell and his girlfriend, Lisa McDowell, had previously lived there. Bell was arrested in Tyler.
The car Bell was driving belonged to McDowell. In it, investigators found a pair of jeans covered in blood. In Bell's wallet, they found a business card belonging to Luis Ramirez, then 34. They also found a hand-drawn map to Ramirez's ex-wife's home, a description of her vehicle, and her license plate number.
Lisa McDowell told investigators that on the day of the murder, she dropped Bell off at the Riordan house between 11:00 a.m. and noon. Later, between 3:30 and 4:00 p.m., she picked Bell up at her aunt's house and drove him back to the Riordan house. On that trip, McDowell saw Bell throw two latex gloves out of the car window. She led police to the location where Bell disposed of the evidence. There, police recovered one glove and Nandin's truck keys.
An informant told police that Luis Ramirez had offered him $1,000 to kill Nandin, but that Bell was hired instead.
Luis and Dawn Ramirez divorced in 1995 after eight years of marriage. Trial testimony indicated that Luis was still jealous over Dawn, who began dating Nandin in 1997.
Luis Ramirez was charged with hiring Nandin's murder. At his trial, Timothy Hoogstra testified that a few days before the killing, Edward Bell told him that Ramirez had hired him to kill a fireman for $1,000. Hoogstra also testified that after the murder, Bell told him that he and Ramirez went to the house, called Nandin for a repair, and then handcuffed and shot him.
At Ramirez's sentencing hearing, Dawn Ramirez testified that her husband verbally, physically, and sexually abused her and threatened her after they separated. Another ex-wife testified that he abused her as well. The state also presented evidence that Ramirez once slashed the tires of another man Dawn had dated, and that he had threatened one of her work acquaintances.
Continued on Page 2