"Staring down the Night Stalker"

LAist’s Tasha Paradise recalls spending time at the prelimary hearings for the Richard Ramirez, aka The Night Stalker, perhaps LA’s most infamous serious killer. She’d show up just to hang out, sometimes high, and discovered a morbid subculture that included courtroom “regulars” and “groupies”. Paradise focuses mostly on some of the attention she received from Ramirez himself:

A main part of his freaking-people-out repertoire was the stare. He would pick someone at random in the courtroom and just stare at them without blinking until they started to panic. I watched him do this time after time, and in my drug-addled mind I would think, “When he picks me, I am not going to look away. No way am I going to let him freak me out.”

Then the day came when he decided to stare at me.

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