MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A daylong courtroom showdown involving the president of Miami’s police union and a woman who wanted a permanent restraining order against him has ended in favor of the officer.
Claudia Castillo took to the stand Monday, asking the judge to order Lt. Javi Ortiz to stay away from her forever.
“Lt. Ortiz put a target on my back,” she told the judge.
That dramatic claim started a year ago when Castillo, a civilian, pulled over a Miami- Dade police officer she said was speeding.
Ortiz, the police union boss, waged cyber war against Castillo, posting photos of her holding a beer can and a picture of her card with her cellphone on it.
“I had hundreds of message,” she explained.
She testified she got hundreds of disparaging call at all hours, leaving her fearful.
“Looking over my shoulder, wondering, you know, which police officers were gonna be the good cops and which ones were gonna be the bad cops,” she said.
Ortiz was reprimanded by the department and the Civilian Police Investigative Panel.
At the CIP hearing, Castillo said Ortiz glared at her. She said she was afraid of him then and today.
“It’s nerve-wracking. Just like right now, having him in this proximity, my heart hasn’t stopped beating this entire time,” Castillo said.
But on cross examination, Castillo admitted she picked a fight when she posted the video of the allegedly speeding Miami- Dade cop and gave TV interviews about it.
“You voluntarily inserted yourself into a political debate about police officers and their conduct on the streets of Miami- Dade County, correct?” she was asked.
“Correct,” Castillo responded.
And Castillo admitted Ortiz never sent her a threatening email, text or put up a threatening post.
Ortiz has called his online criticism nothing but free speech – as when he slammed Beyoncé for what he called “anti-cop beliefs” and a state trooper who pulled over a speeding Miami cop at gunpoint.
Ortiz took the stand and began to slam Castillo for pulling over a marked police car.
“Once you put it under public scrutiny and made statements about police officers, I wanted to show that she is a hypocrite and there is a whole other side to this story,” he said.
In the end, Judge Deborah White-Labora ruled in favor of Ortiz, saying what Castillo alleged did not arise to a legitimate threat of violence.
Judge White-Labora did advise Ortiz that he might spend a little less time on Facebook and Twitter.
While Castillo has no comment as she left the courthouse, Ortiz had a few words to say.
“There are a lot of thing you can call me, but I was not a stalker. I was never a threat to her and I will never be a threat to her,” he said.