HORROR details have emerged on the cause of death for a grandfather Mark Collins and his four grandsons who were killed by an escaped convict Gonzalo Lopez who was shot dead by cops.
During the Sunday service at Houston Northwest Church, a cousin of the man who was murdered along with his four grandsons last week expressed the family’s enduring faith.
Glenn Collins assured the crowd, “You have to understand that, we’re fine.”
On their Centerville property, Mark Collins and his two sons were killed by jail escapee Gonzalo Lopez, according to authorities.
God is still God and we are not, Collins added. “And there is a purpose in this, no question.”
Waylon Collins, 18, Carson Collins, 16, and Hudson Collins, 11, were all killed in the accident. Bryson Collins, an 11-year-old relative, has been named as the fourth victim.
According to the Leon County coroner’s office, all of the victims looked to have been stabbed. There could be weeks before the full autopsy report is released, he said.
In the meantime, the investigation into how Lopez got away is still going on. After crashing a TDCJ bus that he had stolen and taken over, he had been on the run for about three weeks.
He was slain in a firefight south of San Antonio after stealing firearms and a pickup from the Collins ranch.
For medical visits, Lopez and the other detainees boarded the bus in Gatesville and rode to Huntsville in the other direction. On Monday, TDCJ announced that those inmate transfers had been halted until the inquiry was complete.
Prison officials said in a statement that “if it becomes necessary to perform a transit such as releasing or an emergency medical appointment, further security measures will be taken.” A Serious Incident Study is being conducted internally, and an outside firm will be hired to undertake an independent review to discover reasons that may have led to Lopez’s escape.
Friends and family members of the victims question whether or not Mark Collins was informed a few days prior to the killings that a burglary near his ranch was linked to Lopez.
Afterwards, Toni Apodaca stated, “And it’s terrible they didn’t know he was still in this region. It’s a shame.”
Because of his connections to the Mexican Mafia, she said most of the folks in the region felt Lopez was long gone.
“I’m sure he wouldn’t have brought his grandsons up here if Mr. Collins knew he was still in this region,” Apodaca added.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Mario Apodaca, who described the incident as “awful – it’s really tragic – something that shouldn’t have happened”.