MINEOLA, N.Y. – Acting Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced that a Valley Stream man convicted of shooting a Queens man to death was sentenced to 35 years in prison today.
Orlando Ortiz, 32, was found guilty by a jury, in December 2014, of Manslaughter in the 1st Degree (a B violent felony) and Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the 2nd Degree (a C violent felony) in a trial that lasted 6-1/2 weeks before Nassau County Court Judge William Donnino in December 2014.
“This defendant shot an unarmed man multiple times as he sat in his car, unable to defend himself,” Acting DA Singas said. “This cruel act of wanton violence will now be met with equally strong consequence – a prison sentence for more years than the defendant has been living. I thank the police and prosecutors who worked so hard to bring this defendant to justice, and the jury and the judge for their careful consideration of the case.”
Acting DA Singas said that on Dec. 23, 2013, at approximately 11:55 p.m., Ortiz fired multiple shots into the car where the victim, a 50-year-old man from Rosedale, Queens, was seated in the parking lot of Ay! Caramba in Valley Stream.
Prior to the incident, witnesses saw Ortiz and his victim drinking and arguing at the bar. Witnesses then saw Ortiz angrily following the victim to his car parked outside the bar, where the shooting occurred. The defense had argued at trial that the defendant mistakenly believed that a flashlight held by the victim was a gun pointed at him. No gun was recovered from the victim’s vehicle.
Assistant District Attorney Brian Lee, deputy chief of Acting DA Singas’ County Court Trial Bureau, and ADA Timothy McNutt, are prosecuting the case. Ortiz is represented by Joann Squallice, Esq.