EL RANCHO, N.M. – New Mexico State Police say a man suspected of killing a couple and their adult son nearly four years ago tried to steal $20,000 from the family who had previously let him stay in their home.
Nicholas Ortiz is jailed Tuesday on three counts of murder and other charges after a judge rejected his parents' request to have him released. They said during a preliminary hearing Monday that Ortiz had cooperated with police.
Investigators say 53-year-old Dixie Ortiz, 55-year-old Lloyd Ortiz and their special-needs son, 21-year-old Steven Ortiz, were found dead from head trauma in their home in El Rancho, north of Santa Fe, on June 29, 2011.
Police later discovered a blood-stained pickax in a nearby field and linked the weapon to the killings.
There's no indication the suspect is related to the victims.