Police beat: Kitchener man subject of ‘sudden death’ investigation: OPP

PUSLINCH – Police have now identified the dead person found in a car here last week, but they are not providing any other details about the ongoing “sudden death” investigation.

In a Sept. 10 press release Wellington County OPP officials stated “a deceased individual was located in a blue sedan along Wellington Road 34” on Sept. 8.

On Sept. 13 police announced the dead person is Juan David Escobar Ortiz, 32, of Kitchener.

However, the OPP did not provide any details about the cause of death, nor did they say if foul play is suspected.

Police are asking anyone that has dashcam video from the area or has information about the incident to contact the Wellington County OPP at 1-888-310-1122.

To remain anonymous,  call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or submit a tip online at www.csgw.tips. Tip providers may be eligible for a reward from Crime Stoppers of up to $2,000.

Police recover vehicles linked to 2019 homicide

MINTO – Two vehicles believed to be involved in the murder of a Kitchener man last seen alive in Harriston over four years ago have been recovered by the Wellington County OPP.

Earlier this year, investigators released the descriptions of three vehicles of interest possibly involved in the homicide of Jason John Brown, 43, of Kitchener:

– a white Chevrolet Cruze;

– red Dodge minivan; and

– light-coloured Chrysler 300.

Police have recovered the Chevrolet Cruze and the Dodge minivan, while the Chrysler 300 remains outstanding. Investigators with the Wellington County OPP, under the direction of the Criminal Investigation Branch, are working with the Centre of Forensic Sciences to process the vehicles and examine them for evidence.

Brown was last seen on Jessie Street in Harriston on March 12, 2019. His body was located the following day, just north of Whitby.

The Ontario government is offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for Brown’s death.

Crime Stoppers Guelph Wellington is offering an elevated reward of $5,000 for any tips that lead to an arrest.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the Wellington County OPP Crime Unit at 1-888-310-1122. To remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or submit a tip online at ontariocrimestoppers.ca.

‘Partner violence’

WELLINGTON COUNTY – Over the past couple of months, the OPP has charged a number of people in what police call “intimate partner violence” investigations.

On Aug. 8, Wellington County OPP officers responded to a house in Minto. A 23-year-old from Minto was charged with assault causing bodily harm.

On Aug. 12 police responded to an address in Centre Wellington. A 34-year-old from Centre Wellington was charged with failing to comply with a probation order.

On Aug. 13, the OPP responded to an address in Wellington North. A 58-year-old from North Perth was charged with assault.

On Aug. 20 police responded to a house in Erin. A 45-year-old from Erin was charged with assault.

On Aug. 21, the OPP responded to an address in Wellington North. A 30-year-old from St. Catharines was charged with assault.

On Aug. 21, officers responded to an address in Minto. A 54-year-old from Woolwich was charged with assault, assault with a weapon and uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm.

Mischief charge

PALMERSTON – A local man has been charged after a radar speed detection device was damaged here.

Wellington County OPP officials say police responded to a mischief call on Sept. 18.

“It was reported that sometime overnight, a radar speed detection device, located on King Street, Palmerston, had been damaged,” police stated.

Richard Terence Hays, 38, of Palmerston, was charged with mischief over $5,000 and possession of break-in instruments. He is to appear in Guelph court on Oct. 24.

Squeals tires, charged

FERGUS – On Sept. 1 at about 4:15pm, a Wellington County OPP officer was monitoring traffic on Scotland Street here. Police say the officer saw the driver of a black pickup truck “committing a traffic offence and squealing the vehicle’s tires.”

A driver from Fergus was charged with performing a stunt, disobeying a stop sign and driving without two plates. The defendant is to appear in Guelph court on Nov. 29.

Break-in, driving charges

ORANGEVILLE – A Mount Forest man is facing break and enter and drinking and driving charges after an incident here last weekend.

Dufferin OPP officials  say police were called to a dispute on Front Street in Orangeville on Sept. 10 at about 10:20pm. 

The dispute “escalated”  and “one of the involved individuals damag(ed) property,” police stated. “This individual fled the scene in a vehicle. Officers located the male a short time later …”

William Newport, 27, of Mount Forest, was charged with: driving with more than 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood in his system, impaired driving, driving a vehicle without a required ignition interlock device, driving without a licence, mischief under $5,000 and break and enter with intent to commit an indictable offence. 

He is to appear in court at a later date. His licence was suspended for 90 days, and the vehicle impounded for seven days.