Houston Police Officer Drowns in Patrol Car

August 29, 2017 Updated: September 13, 2017    

UPDATE: The officer was later identified as Sergeant Steve Perez, 60, a 34-year veteran of the force whose body was found after apparently drowning while attempting to get to work on Sunday, Police Chief Art Acevedo told reporters.

Acevedo said Perez’s family had urged him not to leave the house because of the dangerous flooding, but the officer told them, “We have work to do.”


 

A police officer in Houston reportedly drowned in his patrol car amid widespread flooding, according to local reports.

The officer was not identified in local media reports as his family has yet to be notified, reported the Houston Chronicle. The flooding was triggered by Hurricane Harvey, which is now a tropical storm.

The officer was in his patrol car driving back to work Sunday when he got trapped in high water at around Interstate 45 and Hardy Toll Road, the paper reported.

KPRC live coverage of Cypress rescue Tuesday morning. (Screenshot via KPRC)
KPRC live coverage of Cypress rescue Tuesday morning. (Screenshot via KPRC)

Search-and-rescue crews are in the process of recovering his body.

“He was trying different routes, and took a wrong turn,” one high-ranking official told the Chronicle. The officer, after getting stuck in the water, tried to get out but was not able to do so.

Homes are seen inundated with flooding from Hurricane Harvey on August 28, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Harvey, which made landfall north of Corpus Christi late Friday evening, is expected to dump upwards to 40 inches of rain in Texas over the next couple of days. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Homes are seen inundated with flooding from Hurricane Harvey on August 28, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Harvey, which made landfall north of Corpus Christi late Friday evening, is expected to dump upwards to 40 inches of rain in Texas over the next couple of days. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The reports come after a family of six was said to have drowned in Harvey’s floodwaters.

“Sam calls my husband and tells him, ‘they’re gone,'” a relative of the family, Virginia Saldivar, told The Associated Press. “That’s when my husband dropped the phone and started screaming.”

Video of a boy named Rowdy Ward releasing a horse from a pen that has been inundated by water from Tropical Storm Harvey in Texas. (Screenshot via Facebook/Chase Ward)
Video of a boy named Rowdy Ward releasing a horse from a pen that has been inundated by water from Tropical Storm Harvey in Texas. (Screenshot via Facebook/Chase Ward)

Two grandparents and six children under the age of 16 drowned. The victims were identified as Manuel Saldivar, 84, his wife Belia, 81; Daisy Saldivar, 6; Xavier Saldivar, 8; Dominic Saldivar, 14; and Devy Saldivar, 16.

“I’m just hoping we find the bodies,” Saldivar told Fox News.

It is believed that 15 people have died during Hurricane Harvey and the ensuing floods.

People walk down a flooded street as they evacuate their homes after the area was inundated with flooding from Hurricane Harvey in Houston, Tex., on Aug. 28, 2017. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
People walk down a flooded street as they evacuate their homes after the area was inundated with flooding from Hurricane Harvey in Houston, Tex., on Aug. 28, 2017. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)