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Maritza has been shown as feisty and sassy, always quick with a one-liner or an insult. She is a manipulative con-artist, but not necessarily cruel (although she can be, as evidenced by her and Flaca tormenting Suzanne Warren after the Christmas Pageant in Season One). In a flashback sequence, a used-car dealer observed that she had a lot of knowledge of cars, such as torque-to-weight ratios of various sports cars (knowledge one would expect of a mechanic or automobile enthusiast). Frequently underestimated because of her small size and beauty (and the fact that she deliberately pretends to be dumb), she is actually a fast thinker. She tends to remain calm during a crisis and is not easily traumatized. For example, she caused the sadistic guard, Humphrey, to drop his weapon during the middle of a riot despite her fear of him and the surrounding chaos. She speaks fluent Spanish and often swears in the language. She and Flaca are best friends, although the two argue about petty things.
Maritza has a youthful appearance and petite figure. She is short and has black, chest-length hair. She is commonly seen wearing winged eyeliner.
For a list of episodes featuring Maritza's flashbacks, see here.
Maritza is of Mexican descent. She grew up in East New York, and has a young daughter, named Juliana-Fernanda Ramos, who is currently living with female relatives.
It was revealed in flashbacks that Martiza has a history of brazen scams that relied on her ability to distract and manipulate men. Maritza worked as a waitress in a club, and would often scam the clubbers with water in a vodka bottle which she would trick groups of men into paying for after 'accidentally' dropping it. While working, Maritza meets a man named Tavi who introduces her to a more lucrative scam; he takes her to a sports car dealership, and tells her to find an older, wealthy man, pose as a salesperson and get his ID; later, she will steal the car in his name. On her first day, Maritza chooses Edward Spencer, an older divorcee, and pretends to work at the dealership while seducing him, persuading him to test drive a car. She takes his ID and takes it over to the test-drive desk, where a man at a desk gives Maritza the keys after she pretends to be Edward's wife. Maritza takes Edward to the car, but the worker from the desk unexpectedly accompanies them on the test drive. After strategizing for a while, Maritza decides to make her move after the two men begin chatting and holes start to appear in Maritza's story (as Edward believes her to be an employee and the employee believes her to be Edward's wife). She pretends to feel sick and makes Edward pull over, when she exits the car onto the verge. As the man and Edward come over to check on Maritza, she runs back to the car, which still has the keys inside, and speeds off ("We'll Always Have Baltimore"). Presumably, this incident is what caused her arrest.
Maritza was adopted as Aleida's prison daughter and thus has much animosity towards Daya upon Daya's arrival in Litchfield. She, like the other Latina women, eventually accepts Daya into their fold. Maritza is almost always seen with Flaca, her best friend in prison.
She and Flaca audition for the Christmas pageant but are not accepted.
When Gloria assumes control of the kitchen, Maritza is seen working there. She attempts to blackmail Bennett for privileges in exchange for not revealing Daya's pregnancy, but he tires of this and eventually sends Maritza to the SHU.
A flashback reveals that she and Flaca teased Suzanne for her stage fright at the Christmas pageant in the previous season, unknowingly triggering her psychotic break.
In "You Also Have a Pizza", she and Flaca become depressed that they are wasting the best years of their lives in prison. They kiss each other, but then decide lesbianism is not for them.
Maritza gets a visit from her daughter Juliana-Fernanda in "Mother's Day".
Maritza continues to work with the other Latinas in the kitchen. During the episode "Tongue-Tied" she cuts part of her pinky off while in the kitchen. Flaca gets a work reassignment to the Whispers Lingerie factory, which separates her and Maritza, something that is seen to cause her distress. Later, both start to participate in Piper's used panties business.
When Season Four begins, Maritza is still the prison van driver. Despite Pennsatucky and Boo's worry, she has not been abused by Coates. She is, however, occasionally sexually harassed by some of the new Litchfield guards while driving. Maria uses Maritza's position to smuggle panties out of the prison and, after the panty-smuggling business is shut down, to smuggle drugs into the prison. Maritza is initially successful, using her charm to fool the guards, until she rouses the suspicion of CO Humphrey, who is later revealed to be able to speak Spanish. Aware that their position has been compromised, Maritza rouses the rest of the guards' suspicion about the 'gardener' of the COs' houses (who is really Maria's cousin who transports the drugs to Litchfield) and shuts down the drug business. However, Humphrey is later shown to have sociopathic tendencies and, after hearing Maritza and Flaca playing 'Would You Rather', uses his position of power to torture Maritza one day, forcing her into his house and making her choose, at gunpoint, between eating ten dead flies or a live baby mouse. Maritza had previously chosen the mouse whilst playing with Flaca and is therefore forced to eat it, later shown to be trying to throw it up in the bathroom back at camp. COs McCullough and Stratman overhear her and question it, wondering whether Humphrey has something to do with it, but ultimately convince themselves out of pursuing the matter.
- "If you want more pizza, vote for Maritza."
- — Maritza Ramos
- "Everyone likes pizza. It's American and shit."
- — Maritza Ramos
- "And you also have a pizza."
- — Maritza Ramos to Flaca about love
- "My mother taught me to pluck my eyebrows and to duct-tape my tits together."
- — Maritza Ramos
- "If I hadn't buried my feelings so deep that they only come up when I watch Stepmom, I'd totally be tearing up right now."
- — Maritza Ramos
- "Who's karma? Is that the new girl?"
- — Maritza Ramos ("We'll Always Have Baltimore")
- "That's my color. I'm wearing it."
- — to Flaca in ("Bed Bugs and Beyond)"
- Flaca Gonzales (best friend, kissed) - See Flaritza for more information. Flaca and Maritza were both depressed as they felt they were wasting their lives inside prison. Flaca mentions that they will never look hotter. They share a kiss, but realise they are both decidedly straight.
- Aleida Diaz (prison mother figure) - Maritza is first seen in Aleida's bunk; when Daya asks who she is, she claims to be Aleida's daughter.
- Dayanara Diaz (friend; questionable) - Although rough at the start, Daya and Martiza are shown to be friends, however this can be shown to be fake when Daya says she "doesn't even like the bitch".
- Gloria Mendoza (friend) - Gloria is shown to be caring towards Maritza.
- Maria Ruiz (friend) - Maria shows to be friendly towards Maritza, however after Maritza chickens out on the business in Season Four, she starts to bully her.
- Juliana-Fernanda Ramos (daughter) - Maritza mentions being in prison for her first birthday, showing she misses her.
- Thomas Humphrey (abusive CO) - Humps hears Flaca and Maritza talking about what they would rather do, eat ten flies or a live baby mouse. He sadistically forces Maritza to play the game for real.
- Flaca Gonzales (kissed)- Flaca and Maritza were both depressed as they felt they were wasting their lives inside prison. Flaca mentions that they will never look hotter. They share a kiss, but realise they are both decidedly straight.
- She once went on a Valentine's Day date with a Wall Street guy who flew her in a helicopter to D.C., as mentioned by her in "You Also Have a Pizza".