HOUSTON, Texas — A Houston Police Department (HPD) officer lost his life when driving a patrol car on Sunday morning. The vehicle became submerged in the flood waters at Interstate-45 and the Hardy Toll Road.
UPDATE 3 p.m.: The Houston Police Department identified the officer who tragically died when he accidentally drove his patrol car into flood waters as Sergeant Steve Perez.
It is with a heavy heart that we announce the tragic in the line of duty death of Sergeant Steve Perez. pic.twitter.com/cHJxjnFgII
— Houston Police (@houstonpolice) August 29, 2017
Officials are now working to recover his body and the HPD has not formally notified the officer’s family, reported the Houston Chronicle.
“He was trying different routes, and took a wrong turn,” an official identified as “high-ranking” was reported to say.
The officer tried to escape from his vehicle but was trapped inside and is presumed deceased.
Breitbart Texas has provided continual coverage of the aftermath of the tropical storm and the Category 1-4 hurricane that has spread havoc in Houston and around coastal Texas. Tens of thousands have been displaced from their homes in the Bayou City and up to 15 people have died.
The death of this first responder brings the number of known dead from the destructive force of Hurricane Harvey to 15.
Houston area shelters are filled to capacity as hundreds of thousands of people fleeing catastrophic flood waters in the ongoing tragedy of now-Tropical Storm Harvey. Floods that have claimed the lives and property of people continue while concerns shift from roadways to overflowing rivers, creeks, and bayous.
More flooding is expected, and as of Tuesday morning, there was a levee breach in Brazoria County near Columbia Lakes close to Lake Jackson, Texas.
Texas National Guard Major General James C. Witham provided an update on National Guard activities on Tuesday morning.
President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are slated to visit the areas of the Texas Coastal Bend that are starting to recover from the destruction of Category 4 Hurricane Harvey that passed five days ago. Members of the cabinet and Congress will also be there. Texas Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz will be in Corpus Christi with the President and First Lady.
Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with additional information.