Voluntary manslaughter plea in Loomis bat-beating death

By: Gus Thomson,Journal Staff Writer
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One of two men charged with murder in the bludgeoning death of a Loomis man two years ago lodged a no-contest plea Thursday in Placer County Superior Court that could result in a 21-year prison term. Kenneth Lewis Massey Jr., 23, appeared before Judge Colleen Nichols in North Auburn’s Placer County Jail courtroom to plead no contest to a reduced charge of voluntary manslaughter in the Sept. 14, 2009, death of 24-year-old Rudy Ramos. With an enhancement for use of a deadly weapon – identified as a baseball bat – and no-contest pleas for attempting to influence the testimony of a witness, Massey will be subject to a potential prison term of 21 years when he returns for sentencing Oct. 26, Nichols said. The murder charge was dismissed but a second suspect in the Ramos death – 23-year-old Anthony Cordero of South Sacramento – remains in Placer County jail on the original murder charge. Ramos was found dead in his home Sept. 14, 2009, and Massey was arrested near his South Sacramento home 2½ months later. Cordero was taken into custody Dec. 1, 2009. Both men had been jailed on no-bail holds since their arrests. According to the Sheriff’s Office, Ramos’ body was discovered at his rural Loomis home after friends of the man couldn’t reach him by phone. They went to his 3700-block Berg Lane house and discovered his body. A coroner’s examination found that he had died of blunt force trauma from a baseball-bat beating. According to a previous Journal report, Ramos had lived with his wife and two children in the rented Berg Lane house after moving to Loomis from North Highlands in early 2009. The victim – a lumber mill employee – was described as friendly by neighbors. Sentencing will take place at 8:30 a.m. Oct. 26 in Roseville’s Bill Santucci Justice Center.