Sheriff’s deputy shoots, kills Laramie man
CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — A Wyoming sheriff’s deputy shot and killed a man who relatives said struggled with mental illness and was fearful of police but a kind person.
Relatives identified the victim as Robbie Ramirez, 39, of Laramie, and said the shooting happened after a traffic stop in Laramie, a college town of about 32,000 in southeast Wyoming.
Ramirez feared police because past interactions with law enforcement caused him to be placed in mental-health institutions, said brother Randy Ramirez, of Fort Collins, Colorado.
But Robbie Ramirez was a fun person with an “infectious smile” who loved to play classical guitar and ice hockey, Randy Ramirez said.
“He was kind, he was sweet, he coached youth hockey for a period of time, before it was overwhelming,” Randy Ramirez said of his younger brother.
Robbie Ramirez was shot in front of his apartment in Laramie after he apparently drove off during the traffic stop Sunday evening, according to Ramirez.
Sheriff’s officials declined to comment, referring inquiries to the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation, which also declined comment.
Albany County Attorney Peggy Trent declined to release information about the shooting, including the identity of the deputy involved, saying she was still awaiting a written report from DCI.
Robbie Ramirez was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, according to Randy Ramirez.
Schizoaffective disorder carries symptoms of schizophrenia, such as hallucinations and paranoia, as well as a mood disorder, such as mania or depression.
Robbie Ramirez worked at his grandmother’s mobile-home park but his mental illness made it difficult for him to hold jobs, including one as a grocery store clerk, Randy Ramirez said.
“The stress was too much for him,” Randy Ramirez said.
Information from: Laramie Boomerang, http://www.laramieboomerang.com