Leon County Sheriff Gives Timeline on Inmate’s Capture, Death
Three weeks had passed since the escape of convicted murderer Gonzalo Lopez. An escape that shut down Highway 7 west of Centerville and brought about one of the largest manhunts in Texas history. Authorities were certain that the escapee had to be somewhere within a triangle bounded by Highway 7 from Centerville to Marquez, then from Marquez to Buffalo, and then back to Centerville.
For nearly a week, these extensive and exhaustive searches turned up no evidence of Lopez. This led to the scaling back of the manhunt around Centerville and the acknowledgment that Lopez may have slipped through the dragnet of law enforcement personnel. Highway 7 was reopened and many armchair detectives believed that the murderer was long gone from the Centerville area.
Flash forward three weeks from the day of his escape, and a grim discovery just a mile or two west of Centerville proved that Lopez had not left the area, that is not until sometime during the day on June 2.
On their Facebook Page, the Leon County Sheriff's Office has provided a partial timeline of the events that happened yesterday in Centerville and south of San Antonio:
On Thursday, June 2, at around 6 p.m., the Leon County Sheriff's Office, along with officials from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) and the TDCJ – Office of the Inspector General and Texas Rangers (DPS) responded to a residence along Highway 7 near Centerville for a welfare check. Upon entering the home, authorities discovered the bodies of two adult men and three male children.
Preliminary findings indicate the suspect, who investigators believe is Gonzalo Artemio Lopez, 46, an escaped prison inmate and convicted murderer, entered the residence sometime on Thursday and gained access to several firearms on the property. Investigators believe Lopez assaulted the home's owner, a 66 year-old male from Houston, and then attacked the home's other occupants, an 18 year-old male from Houston; and three minors from Houston. Justice of the Peace Judge Jack Keeling pronounced all five people deceased at the home.
Following the murders, investigators say Lopez took their 1999 white Chevrolet pickup truck and left the scene. Thursday evening, he was spotted south of San Antonio by the Atascosa County Sheriff's Office. Gunfire was exchanged, and Lopez was killed at around 10:30 p.m.
The investigation continues.
Lufkin, Texas - 10 Year Challenge
The 10-year challenge is getting quite the attention on social media. Let's take a look at how certain areas around Lufkin have changed over the past ten years or so.