ORLANDO, Fla (WOFL FOX 35) - The teenager accused of running over an Orange County deputy and driving away was in court Tuesday. Jancarlos Ortiz, 15, faced a judge for his first appearance.
Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said Ortiz steered a stolen car he was driving right at Sgt. Marcy Pearce when she showed up at his house to arrest him on four burglary-related charges last week. Investigators said Ortiz left Sgt. Pearce with an injured wrist and foot, and several cuts and bruises that are still visible on her face and head.
Seeing Ortiz proved difficult for Sgt. Pearce. She wiped tears from her eyes as she walked out of court after the hearing. “He tried to kill me,” Pearce said when asked why she was so emotional. Sgt. Pearce said she is still in a lot of pain.
At least 25 deputies packed the courtroom and escorted Sgt. Pearce out to her car. It was support that meant the world to her. “Love my guys, my agency, my friends and family and my community’s support is incredible. I’m so honored to have all these people around me. Thank you everybody,” said Sgt. Pearce.
When asked what she would say to the teen who’s accused of trying to kill her, “No, no ma’m. I can’t,” said Pearce.
Ortiz now faces a more serious charge of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer, which prosecutors say is a result of his actions. Whether or not he will be tried as a juvenile or adult is still unknown.
At the state's request, the judge ruled Ortiz to stay in the juvenile center for the next 30 days. During that time state prosecutors will decide whether the 15 year old will be tried as an adult. Ortiz’s next court date is set for March 17.