Four Junction cops on leave after shootout
October 17, 2007
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. A report of “shots fired” led to a shootout with police at a Grand Junction trailer park early Tuesday. Two men are now facing charges and four Grand Junction police officers are on paid administrative leave. Omar Infante-Ortiz, 25, of Grand Junction, was shot at least once when he allegedly brandished a handgun at officers in the A & W trailer park located at 2837 North Ave. Police spokeswoman Linda Bowman said officers contacted the vehicle and its occupant, declining to characterize the specific sequence of events leading up to the shooting. Police declined comment on a host of details the shooting remains under investigation. Two Grand Junction police patrol cars remained inside a taped-off crime scene Tuesday morning. Colorado Bureau of Investigation crime scene specialists worked inside the trailer park through most of Tuesday. They left shortly before 5 p.m. Four officers were placed on administrative leave standard practice for any officer-involved shooting, Bowman said. Their names have not been disclosed. Infante-Ortiz, along with Marcos J Mendoza, 21, allegedly broke into an apartment unit at 2852 Belford Ave. shortly before 2 a.m., threatening the occupants, according to a police news release. Infante-Ortiz allegedly fired a handgun inside the apartment. Infante-Ortiz and Mendoza fled in a white minivan. Police caught up with the vehicle less than a block away, inside the trailer park. Roberto Monarrez, 12, who lives four residences away, said he was awakened by gunfire early Tuesday. Monarrez described hearing five to 10 shots, screaming and what sounded like a large window shattering. I know the little kid who lives there, but I dont know the guy who got shot, Monarrez said. Infante-Ortiz was transported to St. Marys Hospital in Grand Junction. A spokesman couldnt confirm if he was still there Tuesday evening. Police said an arrest warrant has been issued for Infante-Ortiz on charges of first-degree burglary, felony menacing, first-degree assault on a peace officer, reckless endangerment and prohibited use of a weapon. Mendoza is being held at the Mesa County Jail on charges of first-degree burglary and felony menacing. According to CBI criminal records, Infante-Ortiz has been arrested four times in Mesa County since 2002 on misdemeanor charges including drunken driving and driving under restraint. Mendoza has been arrested seven times including a felony drug charge, fraud and introduction of contraband.