Deputy Sheriff Candelario Ortiz

Deputy Sheriff Candelario Ortiz

Dimmit County Sheriff's Department, Texas

End of Watch Friday, September 12, 1913

Candelario Ortiz

Deputy Candelario Ortiz was shot and killed after he and another deputy were abducted by a weapons-smuggling group from Mexico. He and three officers went to investigate a claim that the group of men were smuggling guns into the county. A scout group intercepted the two deputies and took them back to their camp and tied them up.

The sheriff and a city marshal were then fired upon as they approached. When the group retreated they tied the two deputies' hands behind their backs and packed them with the guns and ammunition. After walking several miles Deputy Ortiz was unable to climb a hill loaded with the equipment and the suspects shot and killed him.

The group was captured a few days later near the Rio Grande River after a shootout with Texas Rangers and members of the U.S. Army. Two were killed and 16 others were taken into custody. 14 were charged in connection with Deputy Ortiz's murder. 13 were convicted of murder. Four were sentenced to life and the others were sentenced to prison terms ranging from six to 25 years. Of the four sentenced to life escaped a year later from the Texas Penitentiary and was never recaptured. Two others were pardoned by Governor Miriam A. Ferguson on August 21, 1926. One who was sentenced to 15 years was killed in prison August 20, 1916.


  • Age 48
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle
  • Offender Charged with murder

Most Recent Reflection

View all 17 Reflections

I learned of my great-great grandfather Candelario Ortiz through my mother who is the granddaughter to Louis Ortiz one of Candelario's sons. It is both exciting & heartfelt to learn of his heroic actions and unfortunate death. Reading through these reflections goes to show that you will never be forgotten. Thank you for your service-Rest In Peace.

Great-Great Granddaughter

June 5, 2017

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