Juan David Ortiz, a 10-year veteran supervisor with border patrol is in custody. Local officials are labeling him as a serial killer after allegedly killing four people and assaulting another woman.
Authorities believe Ortiz is behind the slaying of three women and one transgender woman.
“There’s probable cause to believe that this individual is responsible for this series of murders, which I would qualify as a serial murder that we have so we will be looking on what charges to put on him potentially four charges of murder and aggravated kidnapping.”
Police affidavits state a woman identified as Erika Pena escaped before becoming the next murder victim. This happened after Ortiz pulled out a firearm and threatened her. Pena was able to get out of the vehicle and alert a DPS trooper, who was at a nearby gas station.
Police located and arrested Ortiz Saturday morning.
“He evaded the troopers, ran to the hotel there on Garden where he was arrested and that happened this morning. He was found in the parking area hiding in a truck and that is the information that we have and he was arrested without incident.”
During questioning, Ortiz confessed to the murder of the four victims between September 3rd and the 15th. Three of them were shot multiple times on the head.
The first victim has been identified as 29-year-old Melissa Ramirez. Her body was found on September 3rd. Ten days later, officials discovered the body of 42-year-old Claudine Ann Luera, near the first crime scene. Luera was still alive but died from her injuries on the way to the hospital. Authorities say the third unidentified body was found Friday night in a rural area. A fourth victim, identified as Humberto Ortiz, but known as “Janelle,” was found Saturday afternoon.
This is the second time this year that a border patrol agent in Laredo has been charged with murder. On April 9, Ronald Anthony Burgos-Aviles was charged with two counts of capital murder. He’s accused of killing Grizelda Hernandez and her one-year-old son.
Ortiz remains behind bars with a bond set at 2.5 million dollars. Customs and Border Protection officials have sent out their condolences to the affected families but have not been able to comment more on this case. They are cooperating with local and state authorities in this investigation.