ST. PAUL — A St. Paul man is expected to be charged on Friday in Washington County District Court with murdering a co-worker on Thursday afternoon at Bailey Nurseries in Newport. Gregorio Maso Ramirez, DOB 9-15-55, of 1329 Conway St. #6 in St. Paul, was booked into the Washington County Jail Thursday night.
Early Friday, the Ramsey County Medical Examiner identified the victim as Uriel Navarro Ortiz, DOB 4-9-69, of 1230 Cheri Lane #1 in Fridley. The medical examiner determined Ortiz died of homicide. He bled to death as a result of a stab wound.
The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) and the Newport Police Department are investigating the crime. Police responded to Bailey Nurseries at 1325 Bailey Road in Newport just before 4 p.m. Thursday for a medical emergency. Upon arrival officers discovered a deceased male victim now known to be Ortiz.
Investigators quickly identified Ramirez as the suspect in the homicide. According to the preliminary investigation, Ramirez was the only person with Ortiz at the time of the incident. He left the nursery immediately afterward, but later turned himself in to the St. Paul Police Department. St. Paul police immediately transported Ramirez to Regions Hospital in St. Paul for injuries sustained during the incident at Bailey Nursery. Following treatment he was booked into the Washington County Jail. A knife believed to be the murder weapon was located in St. Paul overnight.
Ramirez and Ortiz are both employees of Bailey Nursery. Investigators do not believe this was a random crime and do not believe there is an ongoing threat to public safety.
This remains an active and ongoing criminal investigation. The BCA and Newport Police Department are investigating the crime with assistance from the Woodbury, St. Paul Park and St. Paul police departments, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and the Washington County Attorney’s Office.