The Night Stalker's wife
'He's kind, he's funny, he's charming'July 28, 1997
Web posted at: 7:10 p.m. EDT (2310 GMT)
LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- Richard Ramirez was quoted as saying he wanted to go down as the most famous serial killer there ever was. If he failed, it wasn't for lack of trying.
The man known as the Night Stalker was captured by residents of an east Los Angeles neighborhood after a killing spree that included 14 murders, 5 attempted murders and six rapes. Ramirez is on death row in San Quentin Prison awaiting an execution that many believe is well-deserved.
But Doreen Ramirez disagrees.
"He's kind, he's funny, he's charming," she said. "I think he's really a great person. He's my best friend; he's my buddy."
He is also her husband. They married last year, after a courtship that began in 1985 when Doreen saw him on television after his arrest. She began visiting him in prison, sat through his trial and believes to this day that he is innocent.
She is well aware that many people think she is crazy or naive.
"Or stupid or lying," she said, finishing the thought. "And I'm none of those things. I just believe in him completely. In my opinion, there was far more evidence to convict O.J. Simpson, and we all know how that turned out."
Disowned by her family
She also knows it is hard to understand why anyone would want to marry such a man.
"I know it is," she said. "It'd be hard for me to understand if my best friend came to me and said, 'You know, this guy Timothy McVeigh, who just got convicted? I really think he's cute and I'm gonna write to him.' I mean, I would think that's kind of strange."
But she says she loves Ramirez, and it hasn't come cheap. Her family has disowned her, and she knows she will never have a family of her own.
"I love children," she said. "I've never made any secret to him that I wanted five or six children. But that dream didn't come true for me and I've just replaced it with a different dream."
Which is? "Which is, being with Richard."
'It's a lonely lifestyle'
These days she does public appearances with Philip Carlo, author of a book that details the overwhelming evidence against Ramirez. They get along, except when the talk turns to other women.
"When I met Richard," Carlo said, "he had 12 or 15 girlfriends. Doreen was one of ..."
"Oh, they weren't girlfriends," Doreen interjects.
"Well, she calls them pop tarts," Carlo said.
"I didn't call 'em pop tarts," she replied.
"The point is, he had ten women that I interviewed that had relationships with him," Carlo said.
Now it's only Doreen. She takes Polaroid snapshots of Ramirez on her prison visits, and gets a peck on the cheek from her husband, but little else.
"Its lonely," she says. "It's a lonely lifestyle, but I knew it would be."
Correspondent Anne McDermott contributed to this report.
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