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Dorchester Man Captured in Dominican Republic Brought Back to United States to Face Murder Charges in Bridgewater Homicide

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Contact:  Beth Stone- (508) 584-8120

BROCKTON – A Dorchester man on the lam with a warrant out for his arrest on murder charges has been captured and is in the process of being brought back to Massachusetts, Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz announced today.

The FBI and their Dominican Republic partners arrested Fernando Owens (DOB: 09/04/72) of Dorchester, in the Dominican Republic on Tuesday. Owens was returned to New York late Thursday night and was scheduled to be arraigned today on a fugitive from justice charge on the Massachusetts Murder warrant. If Owens waives extradition, he will be brought back to Massachusetts next week to face Murder and Aggravated Kidnapping charges in Brockton.

Bridgewater Police received a 911 call just before midnight on November 3, 2015 for a report of a fire burning beside MBTA train tracks. Police determined it to be a human body on fire and it was later identified as 29-year-old Ashley Bortner of New Jersey. Bortner’s body had been burned over 70%, she had been gagged by clothing and her face was wrapped with a towel. Bortner’s hands and feet were also bound behind her.

State Police investigators have determined that Owens was acquainted with the victim in this case and police seized items from Owens’ Dorchester home that link him to the murder.

A New Hampshire married couple have also been charged in Bortner’s murder. Julian Squires (DOB: 12/08/74) and Shannon Squires (DOB: 07/04/76) and face one count each of Murder and Aggravated Kidnapping. The Squires allegedly were in Bridgewater around the time of the 911 call to Bridgewater Police and assisted Owens in killing and disposing of Bortner’s body.

State Police assigned to the Plymouth County District Attorney’s Office, the FBI, Bridgewater Police, MBTA Police and Boston Police assisted with this investigation. Assistant District Attorneys Jessica Elumba and Brian Fahy are prosecuting the case.


March 11, 2016