Girl May Have Wrongly Sent Her Aunt to Jail, But as Moms We'd Believe Her Story All Over Again

Heartbreaking 14

prisonAs she sat in a jail cell for nearly 15 years, Elizabeth Ramirez continued to profess her innocence. Accused, along with three friends, of molesting her very own nieces, she was found guilty and sentenced to 16 to 37 1/2 years in prison. Never losing hope, it seems her prayers for release may be coming true as one of the alleged victims has recanted her story.

“I want my aunt and her friends out of prison,” Stephanie, 25, told a reporter. “Whatever it takes to get them out I'm going to do. I can't live my life knowing that four women are sleeping in a cage because of me.” If she is now telling the truth, she has done a horrible, almost unforgivable thing to those poor women, but there are other victims of this lie too.

In 1984, the girls, then 7 and 9, accused their 20-year-old aunt, Kristie Mayhugh, Anna Vasquez, and Cassandra Rivera of a sick, orgy-like assault. They said the woman were drunk and high off pot as they held down their little wrists and ankles and repeatedly violated them. "They painted us as monsters," Ramirez has said. It was a story police, prosecutors, the community, and even some family members believed. And why shouldn't they.

As a mom, I would believe my kid straight away. You know, I even turn a leery eye to adults my son doesn't like or seems to be uncomfortable around. So if he were to tell me something that horrific, I would never doubt him. I would want the person's head on a stick.

It's not just parents. As adults -- we believe children when it comes to charges of abuse, molestation, and rape. But here, an entire community and judicial system may have been fooled. All these years later, an adult Stephanie says the visit with her aunt that day was actually uneventful. Her sister has yet to recant the story, so it's unclear whether the convicted woman will be formally exonerated. For their part, however, the inmates say they are just happy the truth is finally coming out.

A story like this just turns my stomach. I feel for everyone involved, especially those innocent people. Still, I would never doubt my child and any other for that matter. Our instinct is to protect, not question. But the scary truth is that instinct can be used to ultimately betray us. What do we do then?

Does this case shock or anger you?

Image via Ken_Mayer/Flickr

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bills... billsfan1104

If these girls lied about this, they need to go to jail for a long time. This is not recanting a confession. This was serious enough charges, that they were convicted on their stories.

Brittney Hottle

why are most of these articles on ehre about the writers thoughts? I want the STORY not some opinion some random writer has...give me details of these stories. 

Desir... Desireesmom2011

Uhh Brittney This is a site pretty much opinion articles to get discussions going. If you want to read a news article they have these awesome websites that are all news articles most of them have the word news in the tittle too so you know witch ones they are.


Anita Faith Smith

This behavior makes it difficult real victims. Fortunately assessment tools and training have improved since the 80's.

easun... easunshine

Click the link if you want the fuller story! This is a blog. And this particular one is very sad. I hate it for these women if they are innocent, and I hope the girls go to jail if they lied.

nonmember avatar Sarah

Brittney, that's what a blog is...

CPN322 CPN322

This is absolutely shocking. How could anyone make something like that up?!?

Ranti... RantingSyko

CPN322, it happens a lot sadly.  There was some girl at my high school, obviously MORE than old enough to know better, who said some guy in a red car had stopped her on her way walking to school late one morning and had snatched her, raped her and left her in a trash can later.  She limped into school looking disheveled, they spent weeks stopping and arresting guys who fit the description and car type, not letting kids roam around school grounds or walk home alone, everyone in the area was on lock down cause nothing like that had ever happened in the area.  She finally recanted her story a few weeks or a month or something later, and said she'd been skipping school with her boyfriend and didn't wanna get in trouble.  Thankfully no one was arrested  for real or spent time in jail or was particularly accused, she just thought she'd get away with it and just play the victim and get the attention.  These girls SHOULD spend jail time, at least half as much as her aunt and her friends did, that's messed up, she stole THAT much time from these women's lives and has nothing to show for it, that she's visiting her aunt at ALL is amazing, if I were that woman I would've told that girl I didn't have any interest in seeing her face and she could just leave.

nonmember avatar Jennifet

Actually, I don't automatically believe kids when they accuse adults of things like this. I have seen enough people get falsely accused, and have had their lives utterly destroyed. A friend of mine had everything taken from him, his family, his freedom, his job, because his step daughter was angry he wouldn't let her go to a late night party. She concocted a very elaborate story of hire he molested her, and even though there was no physical evidence,.because he is an adult, and she is a child, he went to jail. It came out a few years later, when she finally fessed up, but by then, the damage had already been done. Yes, the kids need adults to listen and investigate when they make these claims, but it shouldn't be an automatic witch hunt.

nonmember avatar Survivor

Yet another count against those of us who actually WERE abused. It's hard enough to be believed without fake accusations!! :'(

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