Assemblyman James Gallagher, R-Yuba City, and Sen. Jim Nielsen, R-Tehama, will hold a press conference today at the State Capitol to introduce a bill that would repeal provisions of recently passed legislation that allows parole hearings for juveniles originally sentenced to life without parole.
The legislation is called “Erik’s Law,” named for Erik Ingebretsen, of Colusa, who was brutally murdered in 1997 by Nathan Ramazzini, his childhood best friend, with both were just 16 years old.
Ramazzini was convicted in 1998 for first degree premeditated murder, lying in wait, plus one year for the use of weapons – in this case the bat he used to bludgeon Ingebretsen to death and the knife he and Leo Contreras, then 19, used to mutilate his dead body.
Ramazzini is one of about 270 California inmates who were sentenced to life without parole for murders they committed while they were minors. Due to the passage of Senate Bill 394, in 2017, Ramazzini and other convicted murderers would be eligible for parole after serving 25 years in state prison. Contreras, who was sentenced to 25 years to life, has already been released.
“I appreciate what the legislators are doing to keep Nathan behind bars,” said Ingebretsen’s sister, Devin Lombardi, who was just 13 when her brother was murdered. “James (Gallagher) has recognized the need for that and is willing to take this on.”
Lombardi has long advocated to keep Ramazzini in jail, but said that California’s new progressive laws have made it clear that the rights of the victims do not matter.
In October, Colusa County Superior Court Judge Jeffrey A. Thompson, who oversaw Ramazzini’s required resentencing hearing, said the now 38-year-old admitted killer “is that rare juvenile offender whose corruption is not repairable.”
Colusa County District Attorney Matthew Beauchamp also said Ramazzini should remain in prison for life because he continued to exhibit severe anti-social and high risk behavior even after he was sent to prison. Ramazzini was disciplined for stabbing two inmates on two separate occasions, participating in a riot, numerous instances of disregarding authority, and was investigated for conspiracy to commit murder, Beauchamp said.
The press conference will be held at 10 AM today inside State Capitol Room 112, in Sacramento.
Lombardi plans to be in attendance. ■