SAN JOSE — A martial arts studio owner charged in June with sexually assaulting one of his students has since been charged with several other counts after three other people came forward to allege they had also assaulted by him, according to court records.
Ernest Joseph Ramirez, 54, appeared in court Wednesday, where Judge Jose Franco appointed the Santa Clara County Deputy Advocate’s Office to represent him. Franco also approved three protective orders barring Ramirez from contacting three of the reported victims. Ramirez has yet to enter a plea in the case.
On June 13, Ramirez was initially charged with eight counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14, based on crimes committed between August 2019 and June 2021. Three days later, the criminal complaint was amended to add 10 more counts related to the claims of three other reported victims.
Ramirez, who ran Extreme Martial Arts in San Jose, was arrested on June 9 after a 14-year-old girl – who now lives in Idaho – told her father that Ramirez had sexually assaulted her while she was enrolled in an after-school program at her studio. . They contacted local authorities, who then alerted San Jose police, since the alleged crimes occurred when she lived there.
After serving a search warrant on the studio, investigators reported that Ramirez denied the allegations. When police announced his arrest, they said they were exploring the possibility of other victims due to Ramirez’s long time supervising minors.
According to court documents, three women contacted police about being sexually assaulted by Ramirez.
A woman claimed that Ramirez assaulted her in May 2021, resulting in a charge of sexual penetration involving an intoxicated or anesthetized victim.
The amended criminal complaint also says another woman told police that in at least three instances between 2004 and 2008, Ramirez had sex with her when she was between 10 and 13 years old. These allegations led to charges of aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14, oral copulation with a child under 14, and lewd and lascivious acts on a child under 14.
A fourth reported victim described being sexually assaulted by Ramirez in the past 14 years, beginning when she was 7 to 9 years old. Complaint describes at least four instances of assault, leading to charges of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under 14; two counts of rape with the use of an intoxicating, anesthetic or controlled substance; oral copulation with a minor under the age of 16; rape by force, violence, duress, threat or fear; and threatening to commit a crime that would result in death or grievous bodily harm.
The charges of rape and threats involving the woman are based on a reported April 14 encounter, according to the complaint.
Ramirez is being held without bond at Elmwood Men’s Jail in Milpitas. He is due back in court on September 21.