Father fatally shot during chance encounter at Bronx intersection

VAN NEST, Bronx (WABC) -- Police are hunting for a gunman who killed a 22-year-old father during a chance encounter at a Bronx intersection.

Brigitte Ortiz say she and her fiance had just dropped off their two-year-old baby on Tuesday afternoon and were driving to work when she says her fiance got into an argument with someone on the corner of Van Nest Avenue and Unionport Road.

Little did Ortiz know how that argument would escalate. She says the man her fiance was arguing with called another man.

Moments later, the man showed up, and asked if her fiance was Jay. Before he could even answer, he fired off one shot into his chest while he was sitting in his car.

Jose Velez, 22, was wounded and drove away with Ortiz in the car. He crashed into other vehicles and drove on the sidewalk. Ortiz was frantic and screamed for help.

Velez was eventually rushed to the hospital, where he later died.

Police are looking for Michael Rodriguez, who is the alleged shooter, along with the other man who was present.

Ortiz says her fiance was a hard-working, honest, decent man.

"He was an amazing person. He was not lazy. He took care of his family, he took care of his friends. He even took care of people who were strangers. If they were outside and they needed help with something, he was running. Even someone had gotten robbed, he stopped a robber and everything. He's that type of person. He's a hero in my eyes," she said.

Ortiz says the suspects are someone Velez knew and had trouble with before.

As for what Ortiz is going to tell their daughter?

"I'm just gonna' tell her daddy went to sleep. That's all I'm gonna' tell her," she said.

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