Suspect in Cop's Death Charged in Apple Store Shootout

Melissa Ortiz is accused of serving as the lookout for the Apple Store robbery suspects

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Melissa Ortiz in the lower left of the image also faces charges in the Apple store smash and grab.

    One of the people charged in the shooting death of San Diego police officer Christopher Wilson was charged Wednesday in connection with a "smash and grab" at the Apple Store in Chula Vista.

    Melissa Ortiz, 22, is accused of serving as a lookout for two men who pointed a gun at the Apple Store security guard while they stole computers and other items.

    According to Deputy District Attorney Michael Runyon, Ortiz played a role in the robbery April 4 that led to a shootout.

    After her alleged accomplice, Alex Choulamontry, was shot and killed by the store security guard, Ortiz and fellow suspect Johnny Chenda ran into a nearby neighborhoods.

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    Two people were arrested following a shooting at Otay Ranch Towne Center on April 4.

    Prosecutors said Ortiz was using a phone application that monitored Chula Vista police broadcasts while she waited in a nearby car.

    Ortiz is charged with robbery, commercial burglary, attempted murder and assault with a semiautomatic weapon, along with gang and gun allegations. She was ordered held on $2 million bail. She faces life in prison plus 29 years if convicted of all charges.

    In July, prosecutors announced Ortiz was one of three people facing charges in the Oct. 27, 2010, death of SDPD Officer Christopher Wilson.

    Alex Charfauros and Patrick Luangrath are also charged in Wilson's death.

    Wilson's family believed justice had been served the night of the shootout when one suspect was killed and another took his own life.

    "We really thought that it was over, when Holim Lee and Lucky Xayasene died at the scene," said Tracy Wilson, the officer's ex-wife.

    None of the defendants is charged with firing the shot that killed the officer, who was killed in a shootout as probation officers and federal marshals attempted to conduct a probation compliance search at Charfauros' apartment on South Meadowbrook Drive.

    Ortiz is accused of turning off a light shortly before police forced their way inside a bedroom where the shootout took place.

    If convicted in the officer's death, each defendant faces 25-year-to-life in prison.