18-year-old arrested in killing of Fairfax Co. teen, police say

Fairfax County police have identified a body found in Centreville, Virginia, to be that of a 17-year-old boy. (Courtesy Fairfax County police)

WASHINGTON — Police have arrested an 18-year-old suspect in the fatal shooting of a teenage boy in Centreville, Virginia, in February.

Uriel Josaphat Espinosa Cruz, of Fairfax, was arrested Tuesday afternoon in connection to the death of 17-year-old Matthew Ortega on Feb. 14, Fairfax County police said in a statement. Cruz faces a murder charge. Detectives believe this is not a random shooting.

Ortega died from a single gunshot wound to his upper body, according to the chief medical examiner’s office. A delivery truck driver found his body in the Jeb Stuart Square area of Centreville.

Police initially asked the public for help in identifying the teen’s body by releasing a photo of the distinct design on his sweatshirt.

Ortega was an 11th grade student at Centreville High School. The school’s principal described him as a “bright and engaging student who will be greatly missed by our school community” in a letter to parents last month.

Cruz is being held without bond. Police continue to investigate.

WTOP’s Chantalle Edmunds and Sarah Beth Hensley contributed to this report. 

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