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Pinellas mosquito control worker found dead while running tests

LARGO — A Pinellas County employee was found dead face-down in a creek where he had been sent to conduct mosquito control tests Monday, authorities said.

Rafael Lorenzo Ufret Ortiz, 63, of St. Petersburg had worked for the county since 2002. A park ranger found his body shortly after noon in the easement north of 134th Avenue N between Adams Circle and 121st Street, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

His death is not believed to be suspicious, deputies said, though the cause remains unknown.

Ortiz, a senior spray technician, was last seen about 7:30 a.m. going to the creek. Someone reported that a county truck appeared to be stuck along the easement, with a door open, about 11:45 a.m.

The investigation into his death is ongoing.

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