ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - The Orange County Sheriff's Office says 32-year-old Brian Mortensen passed away. He is the innocent bystander who was at work, installing a fence at a daycare near the Magnolia Court Apartments, when he was struck by a stray bullet.
Investigators say Mortensen was hit in the shoulder on March 18; the bullet punctured his lung and lodged near his heart. A GoFundMe page set up by friends for his wife and family, says that just days before the shooting, Mortensen became a father.
Deputies say Mortensen, his brother and another co-worker were installing a fence at a daycare next to the Magnolia Court Apartments. Investigators say the suspect, Jakell Ward, had gotten into an argument with his girlfriend. Deputies say she left the apartment, Ward followed her out and started shooting, firing several shots, at her as she got into a friend’s car and as they drove away. Deputies say Ward realized he had shot Mortensen and brought him a cup of water and offered him $400 cash, then took off.
Investigators arrested Ward, 21, on the day of the shooting. Ward has been in jail on attempted murder charges ever since. Deputies say since Mortensen died due to his injuries Wednesday, deputies are working with the state attorney’s office to up the current charge to a murder charge.