Killing followed 2 fights, police say

Jorge Luis Ortiz

Two Dobson Street roommates fought at least twice Tuesday before police found one man beaten and stabbed to death in a shed and the other man inside the house with bloodstained hands and clothes, North Charleston police said.

Officers arrested Jorge Luis Ortiz, 40, on a charge of murder. Ortiz, originally from Zacatecas, Mexico, lived at 5607 Dobson St. with the victim, who hasn't been identified by the Charleston County Coroner's office. Neighbors said several Hispanic men live in the house.

A pedestrian flagged down an officer patrolling the Charleston Farms community at 6:37 p.m. Tuesday and said someone had been killed at his house, a police report said. Witnesses directed officers to Ortiz inside the house and to the storage shed on the property, where the victim's partially clothed body was found, police said.

A detective's affidavit released Wednesday after a bail hearing for Ortiz stated that the two men argued and fought as early as 2 a.m. Tuesday. A witness who saw the victim about five hours later said the man had a swollen face and told him Ortiz had beaten him up, according to the affidavit.

Witnesses told police that the men got into another fight at 9 a.m., when they saw Ortiz chasing the victim with a board, the affidavit said. Both men went into the house.

The first officers who arrived on Dobson Street said they found blood on the porch, in the living room and on the bathroom floor, according to a report.

No bail was set Wednesday for Ortiz because only a circuit judge can set bail on a murder charge.