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Woman Shot By Ex Dies [2004-07-31]

Jose Martinez [New York Daily News]
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A woman who was shot in the face by a jilted lover died yesterday after being taken off life support, relatives and cops said.

Carmen Velez was blasted in the face Wednesday by ex-beau Ruben Ramírez at the New York State Psychiatric Institute in Washington Heights, where both worked as cleaners, cops said.

Ramírez, who was initially charged with attempted murder, will now likely face a murder charge. A spokeswoman for the Manhattan district attorney’s office said charges cannot be revised until a grand jury is convened.

Ramírez, 55, contended to cops that Velez wanted him to serve as a hit man against another ex-boyfriend – a charge that infuriated the dead woman’s family.

“I don’t believe that at all,” said her sister, Isabel Pena. “My sister was a very good sister, a good daughter and a good mother. I’ve never seen her with a gun, no, never.”

The 31-year-old mother of three, whose organs were donated, will be buried in the Dominican Republic.

Her family also has hired an attorney to monitor the criminal case against Ramírez and to protect Velez’s memory.

“We want to make sure Carmen’s reputation is not tarnished,” said attorney Peter DeFilippis.