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Man accused of kidnapping wife surrenders

October 18, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A Westminster man wanted for allegedly beating and kidnapping his wife has turned himself in to police.Jose Ortiz, 26, is in custody after he surrendered at the Westminster Police Station Friday afternoon. Police say his sister drove him to the police station to turn himself in.

Police had been searching for Ortiz since witnesses reported seeing him attacking his wife Thursday afternoon outside their home on the 6800 block of Homer Street in Westminster. He allegedly forced her and their two daughters into his pick-up truck and drove away.

"I just see him, and he was pulling her hair and he had her like by the neck and she was crying," said one witness who did not want to be identified.

"He was seen chasing her across the parking lot, and putting her into a headlock, and punching her in the face, and dragging her screaming to the truck," said Officer Van Woodson from the Westminster Police Department.

Ortiz's wife, Jacqueline Prado Martinez, and their two kids, ages 6 and 7, were found at Ortiz's father's house in Westminster. The kids are fine and the mother is being examined.

"We don't know if he dropped them off there, if they escaped and went there, we're not really sure how they ended up there right now," said Rachel Archambault of the Westminster Police Department. "Basically, the kids were real upset, they seemed a little distraught. The detectives are taking them to the police department right now to interview them and interview their mother."

Police say Ortiz has a history of violence. They have been called several times to the house for domestic disputes.

Neighbors say the couple was always arguing.

"They just fight every night and the cops used to come, like, every other day in the summer. It would just be sad because you could just hear everybody, like, screaming and crying," said the witness.

Ortiz's truck was found early Friday morning near Beach Boulevard and the 405 Freeway. The truck is being searched for evidence.

 

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