The case against a Greenfield woman accused of threatening two girls in Paso Robles with a piece of a broken lamp and talking to them about rape will move to trial, a San Luis Obispo Superior Court judge ruled Friday.
After a three-day preliminary hearing this week, 28-year-old Eliana Ramirez will be required to stand trial on six criminal charges, including committing a lewd act and annoying a child. She has pleaded not guilty.
The allegations relate to an April incident in which she allegedly threatened two young girls at a Paso Robles home.
After a day of drinking, Ramirez went a bedroom where two girls, ages 10 and 11, whom she’d never met, were in, officials said.
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According to evidence presented at the preliminary hearing, Ramirez spoke to them about subjects that Judge Ginger Garrett called “scary,” including rape and human sacrifice.
Garrett said Ramirez testified earlier this week that she was attempting to educate the girls on the behavior of boys and gangs.
Despite that explanation, Garrett ruled that probable cause existed to try the case, citing testimony that she asked the girls to take off their pants and shoved one of the girls after she refused to comply.
Garrett also cited testimony from the girls that she broke a lamp and grabbed a jagged piece, pointing it at them. Adults were in the home downstairs, and the door was open.
The adults ran up to see what was happening and found broken pieces of lamp on the floor, Garrett said in her summation of the evidence.
Garrett noted that testimony showed Ramirez is a mother and wife who sometimes has been described as an overprotective person at times. Her husband was downstairs at the time.
About half of the members in the audience of 30 people in court supported the victims, while the other half supported the defendant.
“She is the loving mother of four young kids,” said Tom Worthington, Ramirez’s Salinas-based attorney. “She has never had any abnormal sexual interest in children. She never had any intent to harm them.”
Worthington said his client had a family member who was raped and she lives in an area where gang activity is prevalent; she has tried to protect her own children.
Her attorney said she and her family didn’t approve of what she did and said she’s “sorry” and “remorseful” but that she has cooperated fully with police and understands why the families of the girls are upset.
Ramirez is scheduled to return to court for a second arraignment Aug. 13 before Garrett.