SAN ANTONIO – Inside minutes, Eduardo Lopez’s life was turned the other way up.
The self-employed contractor was at house together with his household on a time without work from his reworking job when San Antonio police knocked on his door with a warrant for his arrest on Dec. 8.
The officers instructed him he was needed in a week-old hit-and-run case that occurred about 5 miles from his West Aspect house.
Lopez mentioned he instructed the officers that they should be mistaken however that he didn’t need to escalate the state of affairs, notably as a result of his children had been at house. Officers instructed him they might take him to talk to the detective and that he’d “be again very quickly,” Lopez mentioned in an interview with KSAT on Friday.
As an alternative, they charged him with two felony counts of failure to cease and render assist and took him to the Bexar County Jail. His bail was set at $15,000, courtroom data present.
Lopez, 48, mentioned he didn’t have the cash for bail. So he scraped collectively the money he had saved for his 4 son’s Christmas presents and requested a buddy for a mortgage. He paid a bondsman $1,500 to cowl the bail so he may very well be launched the following day.
Lopez mentioned that he was embarrassed when he noticed native information shops, together with KSAT, cowl the arrest, citing courtroom and police data. There, Lopez came upon extra in regards to the case he was charged in.
On Dec. 2, police had been referred to as to the scene of a crash within the 3700 block of Fredericksburg and De Chantle Street. The motive force of a 2005 black Ford F-150 did not yield and turned left in entrance of a silver sedan, inflicting the automobiles to collide and spin out, based on San Antonio police.
Witnesses instructed police the motive force of the pickup walked over to the sedan and regarded inside earlier than strolling away from the scene, leaving his keys to the automobile within the entrance seat.
An investigation into the pickup confirmed the insurance coverage was expired however was listed beneath an “Eduardo Lopez,” an officer wrote within the affidavit.
When he returned to work the following day, Lopez came upon he’d been fired. He turned all of his vitality towards clearing his title.
He contacted SAPD, the detective assigned to his case, KSAT’s newsroom and even tried to contact Chief William McManus.
Lopez waited exterior the workplace of the detective who was assigned his case for hours to talk with him.
Lopez mentioned he instructed the detective he doesn’t personal a black pickup truck that was left on the scene and is the first proof within the case. He mentioned that the keys left within the pickup wouldn’t unlock the doorways of his house, and he provided cellphone data to clear himself.
The detective defined to Lopez that he regarded him up in a driver’s license verify, and located that he matched the identical description as the motive force concerned within the crash. The eyewitness additionally recognized Lopez in a photograph lineup, based on the affidavit. However the detective mentioned he would look into it.
“If he would have carried out his homework… he acquired mad at me a bunch of instances as a result of I instructed him, ‘You need to have investigated higher earlier than placing me in a photograph lineup,’” Lopez mentioned. “He ruined my life, he ruined our holidays.”
On Monday, almost every week after his arrest, Lopez obtained a voicemail.
“That is Detective Davis, San Antonio police,” he mentioned. “It seems there may be one other Eduardo Lopez that will exist, nonetheless, he’s from Mexico. There’s no data on him, no data for him or something like that.”
The detective mentioned the suspect did have the identical title and the same bodily description, however that he now not “has possible trigger” tying Lopez to the case.
“I’m going to name the DA right now and learn the way I get your title cleared so we will get you again to work,” the detective mentioned.
On Thursday, the costs in opposition to Lopez had been formally dropped, courtroom data present.
However the wrongful arrest left Lopez with out a job and a drained financial savings account. Now, he’s calling on town to make issues proper.
“I don’t have a job. I don’t haven’t any cash coming in,” Lopez mentioned. “San Antonio PD is like … the Grinch that stole Christmas.”
After reviewing the voicemail from the detective, KSAT instantly eliminated its story on the arrest and reached out to SAPD for data.
San Antonio police have declined to remark past a written assertion: “We’re capable of verify that the case you’re referencing is an lively investigation.” The Bexar County District Legal professional’s Workplace didn’t reply to a request from KSAT.
Lopez says he nonetheless “loves” San Antonio police, that one in every of his sons is within the division’s Police Explorer program, however that he’s hoping the division acknowledges the error.
On Friday, Lopez mentioned a lieutenant referred to as to apologize in regards to the wrongful arrest and mentioned he’d do his greatest to try to assist him.
Learn extra on KSAT.com:
Black jogger detained by SAPD wasn’t suspect they had been on the lookout for. Now he’s charged with felony assault on officers.
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