The friends and family of Guiselda Alicia Hernandez, Claudine Ann Luera, Janelle Ortiz, and Melissa Ramirez—the four women murdered by a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) employee in Texas last month—continue to grieve and ask questions about why their loved ones are gone.
USA Today’s day-by-day look at Juan David Ortiz’s murder spree doesn’t provide these families with much more information as the investigation into the killings continues, but it does back up previous reports that Ortiz—a decade-long veteran of CBP—used his position to monitor the investigation into him even as he carried out his violence.
“Border Patrol agents often monitor local murder investigations to help clamp down on human trafficking rings and leads are shared freely and frequently between the agencies.” Webb County Sheriff Chief Federico Garza said Ortiz “was ahead of the curve with the information he was receiving.”
This should merit an investigation of Border Patrol, and leading House Democrats have called on CBP commissioner Kevin McAleenan to look into whether Ortiz “was acting in his capacity as a Border Patrol agent at any time during the alleged crimes.” But, it’s unclear whether legislators have received any answers at all. In the meantime, USA Today continues, “friends and families of the victims are all still grappling with a central, unanswered question: Why?”
“It’s heart-breaking,” friend Stephany Gonzalez tells USA Today. “We knew all four of the victims. We sit down and talk and we cry and we laugh. We remember all the stuff they used to do.”