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The Journal Gazette

Saturday, August 11, 2018 1:00 am

Suspect in beating death drove pickup

JAMIE DUFFY | The Journal Gazette

The man who beat Orlando Fernandez during rush-hour traffic on U.S. 30 on Wednesday was driving a pickup truck, Fort Wayne police say.

Fort Wayne police spokesman Michael Joyner said Friday the investigation is ongoing.

“No one (has been) arrested. We are still trying to figure out exactly what happened other than some sort of battery. We only know that the 'perp' was in a pickup,” Joyner wrote in an email response to a query from The Journal Gazette.

Fernandez, 60, of Fort Wayne, died from heart failure after he was beaten, the coroner said. His death was ruled a homicide Thursday.

Fernandez apparently had words with the other driver around 5:30 p.m. as he was driving east on U.S. 30 near the U.S. 33 interchange.

The other driver got out of his pickup truck, went over to Fernandez and beat him. He then got back into his truck and drove off, police said.

Paramedics were first on the scene, finding Fernandez, a sales engineer with Pyrotek in Columbia City, complaining of chest pain. He was taken to the hospital in critical condition where he died.

Anyone who saw the man in the pickup truck that day or has information about the case is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 436-7867. 

jduffy@jg.net