We’ve had a few days to process the aftermath of David Ortiz’s shooting in a Santo Domingo bar on Sunday night. It was a terrifyingly close call, and there are still a ton of unanswered questions.
In the wake of the incident, there was a ton of misinformation floating around the internet, and I’ve sorted through it to figure out what’s really going on. So, here’s a rundown of the timeline, as well as a closer look at what we know went down that night (and what we still don’t know).
Ortiz was shot on Sunday night at the Dial Lounge and Bar, a nightclub located in the eastern side of the city. Ortiz was socializing with TV host Jhoel López when a gunman fired at close range and hit him in the back. The bullet exited Ortiz’s body through the stomach and went on to hit López (who is expected to make a full recovery).
News outlets began reporting conflicting information about the shooting; some said that Ortiz was hit in the leg, while others reported no organ damage. As we know now, this is untrue. Within hours of the shooting, Ortiz’s gallbladder had been removed, as had part of his intestine. He also suffered damage to his liver.
As it became more clear that Ortiz would require more extensive medical care, the Red Sox arranged to have him flown to Boston from the Dominican Republic. He underwent a second surgery, and is working toward recovery at Mass General. His wife, Tiffany Ortiz, reports that Papi is now able to sit up and walk short distances, but still remains in the ICU for the time being.
What We Know
As of today (Thursday), six men have been arrested in connection with the shooting and one remains at large.
Eddy Vladimir Feliz Garcia, Reynaldo Rodriguez Valenzuela, Joel Rodriguez Cruz, Oliver Moises Mirabal Acosta and Polfirio Alende Deschamps Vasquez are in police custody for acting as accessories to the crime. Garcia was apprehended in the immediate aftermath of the incident, when a crowd of onlookers wrestled him down, beat him, and held him until police arrived.
The gunman is believed to be Ramon Martinez Perez, also known by the name Rolfy. He was arrested with the other suspects, and authorities say he has confessed to pulling the trigger.
A seventh suspect remains at large: Luis Alfredo Riva Clases, also known as “The Surgeon.”
According to Ney Aldrin Bautista Almonte, the director of the national police, the group was carrying out a paid hit. They were attempting to collect an apparent bounty on Ortiz’s head of 400,000 Dominican pesos–the equivalent of just $7800 U.S. dollars.
What We Don’t Know
The general reaction in New England (and likely the entire U.S.) was one of deep confusion. Why would anyone want to kill Big Papi, a known philanthropist and a generally good guy?
The answer is, we don’t know. Almonte and the DR authorities aren’t talking publicly about potential motives, though they did say they’re working on finding the truth by interrogating the suspects they’ve already apprehended.
Though this case appears to be pretty murky from a perspective outside of law enforcement, one thing is clear: this story is far from finished.
In the meantime, we’re sending all of our positive thoughts and healing energy to Big Papi. ❤️️
Photo credit: CNN