Bourbon County

Man pleads guilty to manslaughter in 2005 deaths of two on Bourbon County farm

PARIS — A former Bourbon County man pleaded guilty Thursday to second-degree manslaughter and wanton endangerment in connection with a nine-year-old case.

Librado Rosario-Ramirez, 41, entered the guilty pleas before Bourbon Circuit Judge Rob Johnson.

Commonwealth's Attorney Gordie Shaw recommended a five-year sentence for wanton endangerment and 10 years for manslaughter. The sentences would be served concurrently for a total of 10 years. Johnson scheduled sentencing for Jan. 15.

Rosario-Ramirez was initially indicted in 2010 on two counts of complicity to kidnapping, two counts of murder and one count of tampering with evidence.

The charges stemmed from the 2005 shooting deaths of Miniamin Osario Lazaro, 19, and Francisco Garcia, 28, in rural Bourbon County.

The prosecution theory of the case was that Rosario-Ramirez was furious because Lazaro was seeing Rosario-Ramirez's wife and had gotten her pregnant.

The prosecution alleged that Rosario-Ramirez enlisted the assistance of multiple co-defendants to bring the two victims to the farm where he worked. A deer hunter found the remains of the two men in a wooded area of the farm.

Later, the indictment was amended and the two counts of murder against Rosario-Ramirez were dismissed. The other co-defendants pleaded guilty to charges resulting from the slayings.

In April 2012, a Bourbon Circuit Court jury found Rosario-Ramirez guilty of one count of complicity to commit kidnapping, and he was sentenced to 20 years in prison. He is serving time at Little Sandy Correctional Complex in Elliott County.

However, in November 2012, Judge Johnson granted a defense motion for a new trial on grounds involving a taped police interview of Rosario-Ramirez that was heard by the jury. Johnson concluded that several of the detectives' statements and questions violated not only the Kentucky Rules of Evidence but that "their probative value was substantially outweighed by the danger of undue prejudice."

In September, the Kentucky Court of Appeals affirmed Johnson's ruling.

That trial had been scheduled for Jan. 26 to 30, but the need for that proceeding is moot with Thursday's plea.