Two Hermiston Men Face Charges of Possessing “Ghost” Handguns


Two Hermiston men allegedly possessing “ghost” handguns were arrested Tuesday night and booked in the Umatilla County Jail.

At approximately 8:40 p.m., officers from the Hermiston Police Department were dispatched to the area of the 1000 block of S.W. 11th Street for an anonymous report of four people acting suspiciously. Two of the subjects were reported to be armed with firearms. Officers responded to the area and contacted Jerry Ortega, 22, and David Estrada, 18, both of Hermiston. Officers then determined both were in possession of 9mm “ghost” handguns.

Ortega and Estrada were processed at the Hermiston Police Department before jailed on charges of unlawful possession of a firearm (carrying concealed). HPD said area law enforcement agencies have had numerous contacts with these two individuals.

Ghost guns are unregulated, non-serialized, and untraceable. The guns are purchased in parts and then assembled to avoid background checks.

On Wednesday morning, local detectives attended a previously planned regional law enforcement meeting where discussion of these two individuals took place. A prosecutor with the Umatilla County District Attorney’s Office was present for the discussion. Detectives are also conferring with Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms agents.

HPD said reports of criminal or suspicious activity can be made in several different ways. See the HPD website for more information on how to report crimes or concerns.


  1. We’re they arrested for being in possession of “ illegal” firearms or were “they” arrested for being in possession of any firearm? There is a difference. Will they be held accountable? I doubt the actual firearms were illegal if possessed by any of the 99.9% of normal, non criminals. I’m betting they were habitual criminals. Good job HPD!


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