Toronto resident died of blunt force trauma: police
Toronto police have released this photo of Jose Ortiz, 65, who was found dead in his west-end apartment on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013.
Published Tuesday, January 22, 2013 9:15PM EST
Toronto police have identified the city’s fourth homicide victim of the year as 65-year-old Jose Ignacio Ortiz.
Ortiz was found in his basement apartment on Melville Avenue Jan. 19 by firefighters who were called to the home after neighbours complained a smell of gas coming from the home.
The firefighters found him at around 9:40 p.m.
Paramedics responding to the scene near Dupont Street and Ossington Avenue said Ortiz’s lifeless body showed signs of trauma. Homicide detectives were called to the scene later that night to investigate.
Speaking at a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Det. Sgt. Pauline Gray said an autopsy performed Jan. 21 showed Ortiz died of blunt force trauma.
A Toronto resident originally from Ecuador, Ortiz was unemployed and struggled with addiction to alcohol, cocaine and cigarettes, Gray said.
“Although Mr. Ortiz spent the majority of his time in his small apartment and struggled with addiction, he was well-known within his community,” Grey said.
Grey said Ortiz had lived in the apartment for a number of years and that he had not had any contact with police for more than 20 years.
She also said she believes the reported smell of gas is not connected to Ortiz’s death.
“The gas itself was the reason we were in the apartment,” Grey said. “I’m not convinced that it had anything to do with the murder of Mr. Ortiz. It’s been cold as you know. It’s not unusual for residents to use gas appliances to add warmth to their spaces.
Police have not announced a suspect or any motives for why someone may have wanted to harm Ortiz.
Police are still trying to determine Ortiz’s last movements on Jan. 18 and Jan. 19 and are asking anyone with information to come forward.
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