Texas authorities continue search for inmate who escaped prison bus

Posted at 11:44 AM, May 18, 2022

Authorities in Texas have released new photos of “dangerous” Leon County prison bus escapee Gonzalo Lopez.

On Wednesday, the TDCJ held a press conference about the latest developments in the search for Lopez.

According to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, the photos were taken from the surveillance video of Lopez as he was being escorted — last Thursday — to the prison bus.

New photos released of "dangerous" Leon County prison bus escapee.

On May 12, authorities said the 46-year-old was being taken for a medical appointment via bus from the Hughes Unit in Gatesville to the Estelle Unit in Huntsville.

But while being transported, Lopez managed to attack the correctional officer and escape.

“Due to his criminal history and restrictive housing status, inmate Lopez was being transported in a separate, caged area of the bus, designated for high-risk inmates,” authorities said Wednesday. “During the transport, inmate Lopez defeated his restraints, cut through the expanded metal, crawled out through the bottom of the cage, and attacked the driver. The officer stopped the bus and engaged in an altercation with inmate Lopez, both eventually exiting the bus."

A second officer left out the back of the bus and approached Lopez, who then got back into the bus and began driving away, officials said.

That's when officers fired shots at the bus, striking a rear tire.

The bus then left the roadway. Lopez then got out of the bus and ran towards a wooded area off Highway 7 in Leon County.

Officials said he was last seen wearing white clothing.

A $50,000 reward has been offered for information leading to his capture.

Anyone with information on Lopez should call TDCJ OIG Crime Stoppers at 1-800-832-8477 or (936) 437-5171.

Doug Myers at KXXV first reported this story.