Man charged in fatal 2016 Greektown hit-and-run
A 22-year-old Metro Detroit man has been charged in connection with the hit-and-run death of a 64-year-old man in Greektown two years ago.
Gilberto Ramon Ortiz was formally charged in Wayne County Circuit Court with tampering with evidence and obstruction of justice. If convicted of the felony tampering charge, he faces up to 10 years in prison. The obstruction of justice charge is a felony punishable by up to two years in prison.
Ortiz is free on a $10,000 bond and was arraigned on the charges before Judge James Chylinski. Chylinski scheduled Ortiz's next court appearance for April 24th.
Ortiz said little in court Thursday and only spoke to answer a couple of the judge's questions.
Last month, a 36th District Court judge ordered Ortiz bound over to the circuit court. Ortiz stood mute and the court entered a plea of not guilty on his behalf, according to court records.
Authorities said Maurice Parker Mims, 64, was killed by a hit-and-run driver in a silver Chevrolet Impala on Nov. 11, 2016 at the intersection of Randolph and Larned in Greektown.
The retired marine was a street artist licensed by the city, his family said Thursday after Ortiz's arraignment. They also said Mims was the second oldest of 17 children.
"He was a wonderful brother," Marvin Mims, 56, of Southfield, said.
Dwayne A. Mims Sr., 58, also of Southfield, said Ortiz had the windshield of the car that struck and killed his brother, repaired the day after the collision.
"The hope is he gives up the guy who was actually driving the car," he said. "They've got some good evidence against Ortiz. The windshield had my brother's DNA on it."
The brothers said they are patient and prayerful and their faith has helped them cope with Mims' death for the last two years.
They also said Crime Stoppers of Michigan is offering a reward of up to $2,500 for any information that leads to the arrest of the suspect or suspects who were in the car that struck and killed their brother.
Marvin Mims said the family is hopeful the authorities will find the driver.
"It's a process," he said. "We're hopeful that Mr. Ortiz will turn over the guy who was driving. He took it to be fixed the next day, so he obviously knows who was driving it."