RUSSELLVILLE, Ala. – Authorities in Franklin County are actively searching for a man accused of a repeatedly abusing a young girl. Russellville police say his crimes against the victim lasted for years.
According to investigators, as they were closing in on Miguel Ortiz he vanished. However, there is a strong possibility he’s hiding somewhere in Franklin County.
Residents along Beech Avenue in Russellville say a small tan home is where Miguel Ortiz once lived before he disappeared. Neighbors here are so shaken by the allegations they did not want to be interviewed on camera. Russellville police say Ortiz sexually abused a young girl in the home for more than six years. In early 2017, then 12-years old, the victim became pregnant.
“We don’t want it to happen again. We don’t want it to happen to someone else,” stated Chief Chris Hargett with Russellville Police Department. “So, it’s one of our top priorities of trying to locate and bring this person to justice.”
Russellville police say it wasn’t until earlier this year when the victim came forward to investigators. She told them the chilling details of what Ortiz had been doing to her.
“It’s hard to imagine what she is going through,” said Hargett. “I know there has been some things here lately that’s happened that’s going to be a positive influence in her life. So, we’re hoping that will benefit her in the long run.”
Both the victim and the newborn have been adopted and everyone will feel safer when Ortiz is locked up.
There’s a cash reward being offered through Shoals Area Crime Stoppers to get Ortiz off the streets and behind bars. All it takes is one phone call. Russellville police urge anyone with information which will help locate Miguel Ortiz to call the tip line at (256)386-8685.