NewsLocal News


Cartel killer Gonzalo Lopez may have been nearby the whole time after escape: TDCJ

During his escape, authorities believe Lopez killed family of five.
Gonzalo Lopez
Posted at 12:35 PM, Jun 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-06 15:49:43-04

Authorities now believe convicted murderer Gonzalo Lopez may have remained in the general area during his escape, prior to his death.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) also believes Lopez could have entered several unoccupied structures during this time to access food, water and possibly clothing.

"This is why TDCJ and law enforcement remained in the area of the original escape," the department said in a statement.

Lopez was fatally shot by police last week, concluding his prison bus escape that had occurred in Leon County. He had been on the run since May 12.

He was finally spotted in a stolen truck in Jourdanton, Texas, roughly 35 miles south of San Antonio.

A Texas prison system spokesman said that while fleeing, Lopez had killed a Houston family of five in their weekend cabin and took their pickup truck.


Authorities have since confirmed via evidence that contact between Lopez and the Collins family did occur.

"Prior to Thursday’s incident, we had nearly 40 roving patrols and numerous law enforcement in the search area," TDCJ said. "TDCJ and law enforcement had cleared residences and identified structures numerous times throughout the manhunt."

Authorities said it remains unknown whether Lopez was already in the home or ambushed the family.

An internal Serious Incident Review (SIR) has since been filed, TDCJ said.

"TDCJ also intends to bring in an outside firm to conduct an independent review to identify what may have led to the escape of Lopez,” their statement concluded.