Federal officials say the Guatemalan illegal immigrant who allegedly crashed his car into another, killing a Texas teen and injuring others while under the influence of drugs was deported three times.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers placed an immigration detainer on Edy Lopez-Hernandez, a 27-year-old Guatemalan national on May 28 following his arrest by Houston police officers on charges of murder, according to ICE spokesman Tim Oberle. The ERO officers filed the detainer with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office following charges that he killed a teenage girl, critically injured her father, and injured her sister while he was allegedly driving under the influence of drugs.
Previous reports by Houston media outlets claimed that Lopez-Hernandez was deported from the U.S. on two prior occasions. ICE officials told Breitbart Texas on Thursday afternoon that the Guatemalan national actually has three.
“ICE had deported Lopez three times: once in 2010, and twice in 2011,” Oberle said in response to Breitbart Texas’ inquiry.
In addition to the numerous state charges Lopez-Hernandez now faces, he could also face a federal felony charge of illegal re-entry after removal. If charged and convicted, he could face up to 20 years in federal prison.
Lopez-Hernandez now faces charges of murder, two counts of intoxicated assault, and failure to stop and render aid following a crash with serious bodily injury, court records obtained from Harris County District Clerk Chris Daniel’s office revealed. He also has a prior conviction for possession of marijuana from a 2010 case.
The new state charges stem from a crash Sunday evening when Lopez-Hernandez allegedly plowed into the back of a car that was stopped at a red light in southwest Houston. Police say there were no skid marks before the impact and that the Guatemalan was driving about 70 miles per hour at the time of the collision.
Court records claim Lopez-Hernandez attempted to flee the scene. He dragged his two-year-old son out of the car in the process. Witnesses to the crash stopped him a couple blocks away as he attempted to run down the street, Click2Houston reported. The suspect was reported to be under the influence of drugs.
The crash resulted in the death of 17-year-old Britney Baez. Her sister, Nicole, suffered a broken arm and her father sustained critical injuries.
The family of the teenage girl set up a GoFundMe to help pay for funeral costs.
Her family posted:
Britney was beautiful, creative, centered and mature for her age of 17-years-old. She was the eldest sibling in a family of four and was very responsible with balancing academics and chores. Her insightful wisdom would calm the worst of disagreements amoung [sic] her peers. Avid reader, enjoyed listening to KPop, playing with her pet dogs and quality time with her cousins were among her favorite pass times. Britney was loved by her family and friends in the US and in Nicaragua. Exciting future plans which included becoming a writer & perfecting her driving skills in her new white sedan was cut short by this tragic event.
Her family said that Britney lay pinned inside the mangled vehicle for more than five hours. They said her father, Mario, remains in critical condition, fading in and out of consciousness. He has not yet been told that his eldest daughter is dead. He still faces additional surgery. Nicole also faces additional procedures for her broken arm.
Lopez-Hernandez remains in the Harris County jail where he faces more than $50,000 in bonds.