The Florida Highway Patrol identified the victims as Dennis Ryan Rinon Ortiz, 33, of California; Albertson Anthony Almase, 31, of Fort Lauderdale; Kristina A. Almase, 26, of Fort Lauderdale; and Lily Marie Azarcon, 26, of the Philippines.
Albertson Almase, a petty officer 2nd class in the U.S. Navy, was stationed in San Diego. His sister Kristina had just gotten married and was the mother of a young girl.
Dumel was taken to Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood for treatment of two broken legs. He faces four counts of vehicular homicide.
Opa-locka and FHP continue to investigate the pursuit.
Perez has been placed on administrative leave. According to his personnel files, he began his law enforcement career as a police explorer in Miami Beach. He twice failed the police entrance exam before being hired by Miami Shores in October 2006 as a recruit.
But just two months into his training, he crashed his car into another vehicle on I-95 while drag-racing at speeds in excess of 110 miles per hour, according to the FHP report. A city of Miami police detective witnessed the race, the report said. Perez, who was off duty, was taken into custody on reckless driving charges. It’s not clear from the report whether he was driving a patrol car or his personal vehicle.
But he was fired the following day and kicked out of the police academy.
He applied to Opa-locka a month later, noting on his application that the reason for leaving Miami Shores was because he “received a criminal traffic citation.’’
Opa-locka hired him a year later, in March 2008. There is no indication in his personnel file that the city conducted a background check or investigated why he left Miami Shores.
A month later, he was given a “post-accident substance control test,’’ which he passed. It’s not clear why the test was administered, since there is no accident report in his file.
In October 2009, a woman filed a lawsuit against the city, alleging that Perez punched her in the head with such force that surgeons had to reconstruct her face by inserting a metal plate. Included in the lawsuit is a copy of the surgeon’s report from Jackson Memorial Hospital, detailing the severity of her injuries.
Perez contended that the woman struck him in the chest and continued fighting with him as he was trying to arrest her. He said he used his police baton to subdue her and finally she struck her face on a “TV shelf,” which caused her injuries. She was not transported to the hospital.
During this time, Perez’s file indicates he received nearly 20 commendations for arresting robbers, writing 16 traffic tickets and making three arrests in one night, participating in a joint narcotics sweep, and collaring various people suspected of murder, armed robbery, carjackings and drug dealing. He was promoted to corporal last year.
At the same time, complaints were filed against him for beating up a sexual assault suspect who was able to take off in his squad car, and inserting his handgun into a juvenile’s mouth.
In the first case, he allegedly bragged to fellow officers about the beating. Later blood was found on his police radio.
In the second, a video surveillance tape shows Perez leading a young suspect away from cameras, into a hallway. The suspect is led back into the holding room at the police station a short time later, then doubles over and collapses on the floor.
The young man later told authorities that Perez had beaten him and placed a gun in his mouth.
Those complaints were referred to the state attorney’s office, but were dismissed.
Chiverton Thursday declined to release the police report.
When asked whether the dispatch tapes seemed to contradict the corporal’s story, Chiverton declined to comment. He said he had not listened to the tapes.
Miami Herald staff writers Elinor J. Brecher and Carol Rosenberg contributed to this story.
If you knew Tina or Albertson Almase, Lily Marie Azarcon or Dennis Ryan Pinon Ortiz, we’d like to talk with you. Please call 305-332-1634.