Houston Man Sentenced to Life in Prison for 2021 Crime Spree, Murder

Houston Man Sentenced to Life in Prison for 2021 Crime Spree, Murder

The first of two brothers accused of a days-long crime spree in 2021 that left one man dead and another injured was sentenced Thursday to life in prison, Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg announced.

“Connecting online with strangers to buy and sell things at in-person meetups has become such an integral part of our culture that thieves and criminals are using the process to take advantage of innocent people,” Ogg said. “We have to remember to stay vigilant and try to have safeguards in place, even for transactions that come together quickly or happen late at night.”

Alexander Salvador Ordonez, 22, was sentenced to life in prison by a judge after a five-day trial in which a jury convicted him of murder for killing 19-year-old Cameron B. Stevens at a Cypress Station apartment complex on Feb. 6, 2021.

Stevens did not know Ordonez or his younger brother, Kevin Ordonez, but was trying to buy a handgun from them, and agreed to meet them late at night at the well-lit apartment complex.

When the deal fell through, Stevens started walking away from the Ordonez brothers, who were in a white 2012 Chevy Malibu. The brothers slowly rolled up to Stevens, who was unarmed as he walked back to his apartment, fired at him and hit him once in the head, killing him.

Deputies with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office responded to the murder and began investigating, including pulling surveillance video from several area cameras.

Video showed the license plate on the car, which was later connected to an armed robbery the day before. In that crime, a man and woman were robbed of their money, marijuana and vehicle by the Ordonez brothers as they posed as marijuana buyers. The man was shot in the leg after handing over his property. He survived the shooting.

Investigators with the Sheriff’s Office later learned that a day after the murder, the brothers were involved in another armed robbery outside an auto-parts store.

The charges against Alexander Ordonez for those two aggravated robberies were dismissed after he was convicted of murder. However, the facts in those cases were presented in open court during Ordonez’s punishment phase to give the judge a complete picture of the scope of the crime spree.

Assistant District Attorneys Gilbert Sawtelle, who is a chief in the Trial Bureau, and Sean Kozar-King prosecuted Ordonez.

“These two brothers were working together in this scheme to set up innocent people who thought they were going to be buying something or selling something and ended up being robbed at gunpoint,” Sawtelle said. “It’s a scary thing for any citizen of Harris County because these kinds of meetups, whether it’s Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, happen all the time, and the last thing that anybody wants is to be robbed or shot.”

He noted that there was no reason for anyone to get shot in either of the two shootings.

“These shootings were pointless,” he said. “They got what they wanted, and there was no need to shoot anyone.”

Sawtelle advised that buyers and sellers scheduling meetups should take someone with them, meet during the day in a public area and stay vigilant. Many police stations and other law enforcement agencies provide an area for strangers to meet for simple transactions.

Several charges, including murder, are pending against 20-year-old Kevin Ordonez for his role in the crime spree. He is scheduled for trial in October.