Assistant wrestling coach arrested

Kati Jividen

The Ames Police Department is continuing its investigation in a drug-related incident involving ISU Assistant Wrestling Coach Thomas Ortiz.

“At this time we don’t have any information that directly links Ortiz to the distribution of the narcotics,” said Sgt. Mike Johns of the Ames Police Department. “Our investigation is continuing.”

Ortiz was arrested and charged with interference Thursday afternoon. Johns said Ortiz interfered with the execution of a search warrant by the Central Iowa Drug Task Force at his residence at 4404 Todd Drive. Ortiz posted a $325 bond shortly after his arrest and was released.

“[Ortiz] ignored the officer’s direction and then pushed officers in an attempt to leave an area he was told to stay in,” Johns said.

Ortiz was unavailable for comment Monday evening, and ISU head wrestling coach Bobby Douglas refused to comment.

Johns said the search warrant resulted after the Drug Task Force intercepted a package containing narcotics that was to be delivered to Ortiz’s residence on Todd Drive. About 10 lbs. of marijuana was confiscated in the package that was intercepted by the task force, he said.

“The package was specifically to [former ISU wrestler] Alfonso Cruz,” Johns said.

“It is my understanding that [Cruz] resides there.”

Johns said he does know what the relationship is between Cruz and Ortiz.

Tom Kroeschell, assistant athletic director for media relations, said the athletic department is still in the “fact-finding” process.

“I want to stress that Thom has been very cooperative in the process,” he said. “We will address this further when we feel that we have all of the necessary information.”