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Prosecutors will seek death penalty against Border Patrol agent accused of ‘serial killing spree’

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The United States Border Patrol agent who authorities say went on a killing spree in September on the Texas-Mexico border will face the death penalty if convicted of capital murder, the Webb and Zapata County District Attorney’s office announced Tuesday.

Juan David Ortiz, an intelligence supervisor for the Border Patrol, was arrested in the pre-dawn hours Sept. 15 after local and state law enforcement say he allegedly murdered four Laredo-area sex workers, including one transgender woman. Another woman, who authorities said would have been his fifth victim, escaped and gave authorities information that helped lead to Ortiz’s arrest.

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He was charged with four counts of murder, one count of unlawful restraint, one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and two counts of evading arrest or detention. The grand jury ultimately indicted Ortiz on one count of capital murder, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, unlawful restraint and evading arrest or detention. He was also indicted on one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, one count of unlawful restraint with reckless exposure to serious bodily injury and evading arrest or detention. His bond has been set at $2.5 million.

Ortiz’s arrest shocked the border community after details of the agent’s actions were made public. Over the course of about two weeks and on separate occasions, Ortiz would pick up the women and drive them beyond the Laredo city limits. That’s when he’d pull over, tell the victims to get out of the vehicle and shoot them in the head, according to his arrest affidavit.

Isidro Alaniz, the Webb and Zapata County district attorney, said at the time of Ortiz’s arrest that the alleged crimes should not be a stain on the entire U.S. Border Patrol.

“It’s super unfortunate and tragic,” Alaniz said in September. “It’s not a reflection of Border Patrol, they do a great job protecting our borders they’re super professional and the work they do is important.”

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An arraignment hearing is pending, Alaniz’s office said.

BY JULIÁN AGUILAR, THE TEXAS TRIBUNE

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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‘Go look at President Trump’s Twitter’: Portland right-wing rally organizer claims ‘mission success’

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The organizer of a far-right rally in Portland, Oregon claimed the event was a "success" after President Donald Trump attacked Portlandiers protesting the group.

"A confluence of protesters on opposite ends of the ideological spectrum merged on Portland’s waterfront Saturday in a tense but relatively uneventful face-off that brought national attention, including a tweet in the hours before the protest by President Trump decrying the city’s signature anti-fascist movement," the Oregonian reported Saturday.

When a similar right-wing rally in Charlottesville, Virginia killed Heather Heyer, Trump argued there were "fine people" on both sides of the "Unite the Right" rally.

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Why was Jeffrey Epstein buying size 5 women’s panties — while in jail?

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The Miami Herald has another bombshell report on Jeffrey Epstein, who died in a Manhattan jail while waiting to stand trial on federal sex crimes charges.

"A decade ago, during a brief stint in Palm Beach County Jail, convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein made an odd purchase at the facility’s store: two pairs of small women’s panties, size 5," the Herald reported Saturday night.

The newspaper noted, "the panties raise questions about why a childless male inmate, accused of sexually abusing girls as young as 14, would be allowed to buy female undergarments so small that they wouldn’t fit an average-sized adult woman."

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White nationalist Republican ridiculed after only 2 people show up for his town hall meeting

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Embattled Rep. Steve King (R-IA) suffered further humiliation on Saturday when only two people showed up for his town hall meeting with Iowa constituents.

King, who was stripped of all committee assignments for his white nationalism, was been an embarrassment for Republicans with his constant racism and misogyny.

A photo of the town hall meeting was posted on Twitter by Reuters photo editor Corinne Perkins.

https://twitter.com/corinne_perkins/status/1162806565109473280

Rep. King was quickly mocked in the comments.

Here's some of what people were saying:

https://twitter.com/sedespres/status/1162811223186006018

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