As the police close in on a motive for the shooting, officials identified the man as Alberto Miguel Rodriguez Mota and alleged he planned to provide the nearly $8,000 bounty to have the retired Boston Red Sox slugger killed. Mota was charged with attempted murder, according to the Boston Globe.
The identification of Mota came as authorities held a hearing for another suspect nicknamed “Bone.” The man, whose real name is Gabriel Alexander Perez Vizcaino, is accused of being the liaison between the alleged hitmen and the person who paid them, the Associated Press reported, citing court documents.
According to the documents, a man who is already in prison for an unrelated crime reached out to Perez for the alleged job a week before the June 9 shooting at a Santo Domingo bar. The person reportedly sent him a picture of the target so he could share it with the hit men.
The picture was shared with the other suspects as they met at a gas station minutes before the shooting. Police haven’t said whether the picture was of Ortiz. Rolfi Ferreira Cruz, the alleged gunman, had previously shouted in court that the hit wasn’t on Ortiz and that the slugger’s clothing confused him.
Perez sold a gold iPhone 6 used to plan the attack to a woman for $180 so he can rid of the evidence a day after the shooting, according to court documents. Authorities said the phone was giving him problems and that’s why he was forced to sell it.
Perez’s attorney didn’t comment on the allegations.
Police have now detained 10 suspects in connection with the shooting, which has left Ortiz bed-ridden at a Massachusetts hospital. Police said they were searching for at least two other men, including the man accused of paying the alleged hit men.
“Trust the authorities,” Ortiz’s attorney, Jose Martinez Hoepelman, said. “They have worked tirelessly to obtain the results that we have so far. We all want more information, but we have to wait.”
Ortiz, a three-time World Series champion, had to have his gallbladder and part of his intestine removed. Doctors who cared for him at a Dominican Republic hospital told The Washington Post that his injuries were “lethal.”
“The injuries he had were lethal, even separately, if they wouldn’t have been taken care of right away, especially the one on the liver,” Jose Smester told the newspaper. “But in that moment, you don’t think about death, you think about what you have to do.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.