Globe – Gila County Attorney Bradley D. Beauchamp announced that on June 2, 38 year old Guillermo Ortega III was sentenced to 38 years in the Arizona Department of Corrections, for the brutal domestic violence-related murder of his ex-wife and the attempted murder of her brother.
According to Chief Deputy County Attorney Shawn C. Fuller, who prosecuted the case, Ortega was found guilty of Second Degree Murder, Attempted Second Degree Murder and four counts of Aggravated Assault on May 6, following a seven-day jury trial. The jury also found that the State had proven three aggravating factors – harm to the victims; multiple victims; and that Ortega had committed domestic violence offenses in the presence of a child/children.
During the trial, the State presented evidence that on April 28, 2014, at approximately 5:45 p.m., Ortega attacked his ex-wife with a knife, following a brief domestic violence-related dispute the two had in her home, which was located in Hayden. The victim ran from the house following the attack and later succumbed to her injuries. While the victim was being attacked. her brother, was inside the home, heard a struggle and came to her aid. Ortega then attacked the victim’s brother with a knife. After the attack, Ortega got rid of the murder weapon and fled the scene. He was apprehended several hours later in Pinal County.
At sentencing, the State recommended a total prison sentence of 46 years, the most permitted under the law – 25 years for Second Degree Murder, followed by 21 year for Attempted Second Degree Murder. Several members of the victim’s family addressed the court prior to sentencing and requested that Ortega be sentenced to the maximum possible term. Prior to pronouncing sentence, the Honorable Robert Duber II found additional aggravating factors, including that the murder was committed in a cruel manner and Ortega had previously been convicted of Felony Aggravated Assault in 2001.
County Attorney Beauchamp commended the Hayden Police Department, the Department of Public Safety, the Golder Ranch Fire District, the Kearny Police Department, and the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office for conducting the investigation that led to the successful apprehension and prosecution of Ortega. Mr. Beauchamp also thanked the Time Out domestic violence shelter for attending Ortega’s sentencing in support of the victims.