COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - A Colorado Springs man has been sentenced to federal prison for drug and gun crimes, as well as carjacking.
Prosecutors said Miguel Cruz, aka Danny Ortega, 39, pled guilty to the crimes on Thursday. He was immediately sentenced to 25 years in federal prison.
The crime spree happened on May 29, 2017. It started at the El Ranchito Meat Market in the area of Academy Boulevard and Airport Road, where a woman called police and said Cruz had threatened her. When officers arrived, they saw Cruz sitting in a truck in the parking lot. When officers approached, Cruz slammed the truck into a patrol car, sped past an officer and another patrol car, and led officers on a chase. During the chase, he ran a red light and hit two cars, according to prosecutors. When one of the crashes disabled his truck, he grabbed a rifle, jumped out, ran up to a car with a woman sitting inside, and took it. Officers continued to chase him, but eventually lost him.
Police recovered the pickup and a handgun that Cruz had dropped. The handgun had been reported stolen from a home in Vermont, according to prosecutors. They also found a tote bag that contained heroin, meth, ammunition, and $20,000 in cash. They found another $10,000 in the center console.
They searched another car associated with Cruz and found cocaine, a rifle, several types of ammunition, and four spent shell casings. The shell casings matched two earlier shootings, including a homicide, according to police.
Police found and arrested Cruz on June 1, 2017, in Colorado Springs. When they searched the car he was in, they found about $4,000 and a sawed-off rifle.