Man Pleads Not Guilty in Killing
A gang member accused of fatally shooting a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy in June pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of murder, attempted murder and possession of a firearm by a felon.
Jose Luis Orozco, 27, has been held without bail since June 24, the day authorities say he shot Deputy Jerry Ortiz in the head as Ortiz investigated a gang-related shooting in Hawaiian Gardens.
The murder charge includes the special circumstance allegations of murder of a peace officer, murder while lying in wait and murder to avoid arrest, which means Orozco could face the death penalty.
The attempted murder charge stems from a shooting four days earlier that injured a man working in his yard in Hawaiian Gardens.
Ortiz, of Diamond Bar, was a 15-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Department who worked with a gang enforcement team. He is survived by his wife, whom he married a few weeks before being shot, and two sons, ages 16 and 6.
Ortiz was checking identifications just outside an apartment door when he was shot by someone inside.