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Family mourns CHP officer who died after being hit by a car


The family of a California Highway Patrol officer who was fatally injured when he was hit by a car while writing a ticket thanked the public for its prayers Wednesday, a day after he died from his injuries.

CHP Officer Philip Ortiz, 48, pulled over a sport utility vehicle June 9 on the 405 Freeway and was writing a ticket when a sedan struck his motorcycle and the SUV.

Paramedics pulled Ortiz from the wreckage and took him to the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, where he remained until he died Tuesday night.

"The family of Officer Philip Dennis Ortiz would like to thank the public for all their prayers and encouraging words during this difficult time," the family said Wednesday in a statement. "During Philip's 28 years with the CHP, Philip cherished his public service and took pride in serving the citizens of the state of California."

The accident remained under investigation, CHP officials said in statement.

A memorial service is being planned, said Saul Gomez, a spokesman for the CHP. The agency had previously spelled his first name as Phillip and given his age as 52.

-- Sam Allen

Photo: Al Seib / L.A. Times

Comments () | Archives (10)

I passed by Officer Ortiz that morning as he stood outside the car; I was cranky because of all the lookey-loos slowing down to watch someone get a ticket. I couldn't believe it when I heard the news later about the accident. I have not been able to get that picture of him out of my head. Then this morning as I passed that same spot, I noticed someone had placed his helmet on the cement wall where the accident occurred. I almost cried. My condolences to his family and to all the officers at CHP. So very sad that a selfish act by one could bring sorrow to so many.

My thoughts,prayers and condolences to the family of CHP officer Ortiz. A real tragedy, so close to retirement.

Has the criminal idiot who was speeding on the shoulder and killed Officer Ortiz been identified?

My condolences to Officer Ortiz family. May God be with you and your family. Thank you for your service.

Very sorry to hear this. I'd hoped he would pull through. Condolences to his friends and family.

To the Family of Officer Philip Dennis Ortiz...so sorry for your loss! All of you are in my prayers.

My sincere condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Officer Philip Ortiz. I too passed by the scene when the accident occurred (as I have for almost 50 years) and had a sinking feeling. I ride a motorcycle, and almost daily see the most unbelievable driving from people who should all know better. My question is: "What will it take to stop dangerous driving?" How can our laws and/or enforcement be changed to curb the escalating arrogance and disrespect we witness in today's drivers? It should not take the loss of innocent life.

And, to those who felt, "inconvenienced" by the closing of the freeway two weeks ago I say, "do something to make a difference" as Officer Ortiz and his fellow Officers do on a daily basis.

To the Ortiz family I would like to say on behalf of my family that I am so sorry. We certainly lifted you up in our prayers and will continue to do so. I want to express my admiration for such a lengthy and admirable career serving our state.
I sincerely hope that people will realize that we are always in so much of a rush, and for what? To run and make our date on time? To make the movie at the theatre? To see our family? Well Officer Ortiz will never be able to do these things with his family again. Slow down when there is traffic, if you see the cones slow down and if your see someone on the shoulder move one lane to the left.
And so far as the driver is concerned, he or she ought to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Condolences to Family Ortiz! I wonder how the other people involved in the crash are doing. Has anyone heard about them? I read that three others went to the hospital as well. Also, does anyone have any REAL information about the cause of the accident. I see a lot of people presuming they know what happened, but not a lot of facts yet.

My condolences to the Ortiz family. Why has the identity of the Infiniti driver been left out of all reports? Was he/she arrested, let go, released on bail? Are they still out there sharing the road with other LA drivers?


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