Ortiz was recognized for his “outstanding investigative work” and praised for “amassing a consistent record of professionalism, proactive work productivity, innovation, and effectiveness as a peace officer.”

For his role in solving the case of a burglary at Cornerstone Cafe in Dunsmuir, Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Deputy Richard Ortiz last week was given a commendation for “exemplary work.”

Ortiz began working at the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office in 2013 after two years at the Alturas Police Department. In November 2019, a large amount of cash was stolen during a burglary and theft at the Dunsmuir business, explained Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey. By the time deputies arrived, the suspect had fled the scene of the crime.

During an extensive investigation, Ortiz developed leads that ultimately identified Yreka resident Lamont Brown as a suspect in the case. Brown had been previously implicated in a separate home burglary and theft near Weed.

Ortiz discovered that Brown was housed at the Siskiyou County Jail after being charged with another series of crimes.

He filed a criminal complaint through the Siskiyou County District Attorney’s Office and burglary and theft charges were later filed against Brown for the Cornerstone Bakery incident, Lopey said.

Ortiz was recognized for his “outstanding investigative work” and praised for “amassing a consistent record of professionalism, proactive work productivity, innovation, and effectiveness as a peace officer.”

“Deputy Ortiz is an exemplary deputy and it is a pleasure serving with co-workers of his caliber and strong work ethic,” said Lopey. He added that the Sheriff’s Office has contracted with the City of Dunsmuir since a contract was originally devised by then-Sheriff Charlie Byrd in 1992.

The Sheriff’s Office “has enjoyed a long-standing, prosperous working relationship with Dunsmuir citizens, city leaders, business owners, and visitors since a law enforcement” since that time, Lopey said.

On hand at the Jan. 8 ceremony to honor Ortiz were Captain Karl Houtman, Lopey, and Deputy Devin Paulus. Ortiz was recommended for the prestigious award by his supervisor, Sergeant Ben Whetstine.