Five Arrested in Connection to David Ortiz Shooting in Dominican Republic

By Zachary Stieber

Five people are being held in connection to the shooting of retired baseball star David Ortiz.

Ortiz, 43, was shot in the lower back outside a club in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, on June 9.

Four people were arrested two days later about 100 miles northwest of the scene of the shooting, law enforcement sources told WBZ-TV. One of the four is the suspected shooter.

Video surveillance showed two men riding up to the bar on a motorcycle. One of them shot Ortiz from behind before fleeing the scene.

The other man, Eddy Vladimir Feliz Garcia, was captured by bystanders and beaten until police arrived.

Garcia has been charged as an accomplice to attempted murder.

None of the other four have been named, including the suspected gunman.

Ortiz underwent emergency surgery after being rushed to a local hospital in an SUV by a man who was near the scene. After he stabilized, he was flown to Massachusetts General Hospital on Monday and underwent a second surgery there.

Leo Lopez, a spokesman for Ortiz, told reporters that he took his first steps since being shot on Tuesday.

“David Ortiz is in stable condition, on a steady process of recovery. His recovery is going well,” Lopez said, reported Dominican reporter Hector Gomez. “David is already breathing normally, everything is going according to plan. David has walked already, helped by his brother Albania, and was then taken to back to his bed.”

Ortiz was in the intensive care unit at the hospital and was expected to stay there until at least Thursday.

Deivi Solano, Garcia’s lawyer, told the Boston Globe his client was a motorcycle taxi driver and did not know the intentions of his fare.

Solano said Garcia picked up the gunman in “good faith.”

david ortiz takes first steps
In this June 23, 2017, file photo, Boston Red Sox baseball great David Ortiz wipes a tear at Fenway Park in Boston as the team retires his number “34” worn when he led the franchise to three World Series titles. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)
Investigative police collect evidence at the site where former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz was shot the previous night inside the Dial Bar and Lounge in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic on June 10, 2019. Dominican National Police Director Ney Aldrin Bautista Almonte said Ortiz was at the bar around 8:50 p.m. Sunday when a gunman approached from behind and shot him at close range. (AP Photo/Luis Gomez)
An ambulance carrying David Ortiz is escorted to Mass General Hospital in Boston on June 10, 2019. (Nathan Klima/The Boston Globe via AP)

“This boy did not do anything. He was totally surprised by what happened,” Solano said, adding that Garcia grew up admiring Ortiz, a native of the country.

“He is David Ortiz’s number one fan,” Solano said. “Since [Ortiz] won the World Series in 2004, he has cut out articles and pictures of Ortiz and put them on his walls.”

Justina Garcia, the suspect’s mother, also said that her son is innocent.

“We really like him, and my son and I are fans of his,” Justina Garcia told CNN. “My son had nothing to do with this.”