Deanna submitted her recount of a sub-par interaction she had with Yulieth Ortiz and a colleague from the St. Lucie County Office in Florida. Yet another story of harassment that hinges on claimed prohibition of certain substances (aka the war on some drugs). It sure is strange that police dash cams seem to malfunction when their operators are said to have acted in the wrong… -Pete
Cop enforcement in Fort Pierce, Florida is HIGHLY profitable (this can be seen with our excessive amount of police force, overcrowded courts and brand, shiny new million dollar courthouse located in downtown), so it was no shock to me that officer Yulieth Ortiz, badge #370 of the St. Lucie County police division, pulled me over one afternoon.
After waiting at a red light with officer Ortiz directly to my left in the other lane, I was greeted with blue and red lights immediately after the green light. Upon inquiry, the officer stated I “looked disoriented” and then called for backup. A second officer arrived. I immediately phoned my father of which he is the paying party of the car I was driving, the phone was swatted from my hand with officer #2 stating that he didn’t know if I “could be calling someone to gun us down.” it was then that I realized both my phone and trust were in jeopardy.
Officer Ortiz asked if she could search my car, to which I responded with a stern ‘no.’ officer Ortiz then ordered I step out of my vehicle. I was firmly gripped by officer #2 an told to sit on the hood of his police vehicle–my car was then searched against my verbal no. The officer came back with a small pill–THIS WAS NOT IN MY POSSESSION AT ANY TIME. Upon testing the pill, she informed me it was an amphetamine (a highly common charge for St. Lucie County). I was arrested, put in the back of the police vehicle, written two tickets (one for an expired registration and another for no seatbelt) and taken to the jail.
After having to pay to be bonded and for my tow, I was shocked at the outrageous accusations and events. I was never drug tested at the jail nor asked any drug-related questions. When I took the two tickets to traffic court (Agency case #: 0111012533), the judge honored the dismissal of my registration since it was up to date, but could not grant me relief of the seatbelt. I tried numerous times to contact and subpoena the video tapes of the arrest that day, but mysteriously NEITHER of the police cars that were present had taping capabilities. I am still fighting the amphetamine case, one orange pill, of which I still have no clue as to what exactly it was she planted in in my car on her illegal search.
Officer Ortiz did say something I thought was strange before entering the back of her vehicle: “you see anything back there? If we get to the station and I see anything, any drugs or weapons, it was from you.” This definitely frightened me, as I was increasingly aware of the corruption taking place. I asked for audio as well, nothing was recorded according to the sheriff.
I also found a case from 2008 involving Ortiz and 2 other cops–they were sued by a man in a civil rights case (case #: 2:2007cv14393) that took place in Martin county. I’m not certain why Ortiz is now an officer in St. Lucie County, but I imagine it had something to do with this case and her having to switch counties.
St. Lucie Sheriff’s Office
4700 West Midway Road
Fort Pierce, Florida 34981