(NewsNation) — The manhunt in nearly two decades in Texas is still underway Wednesday as authorities released more photos of the convicted murderer who escaped from a prison transport bus and stabbed the driver last month.
A spokesperson for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) told local television stations this week that the search for Gonzalo Lopez is the “largest concentrated manhunt,” since 2004.
This comes as authorities released more photos of Lopez’s tattoos in an attempt to get more information about where he could be. The 46-year-old’s body is covered in tattoos. His stomach has a tattoo with the nickname “gonzo.” His back says “Mexican” showing a skull atop Aztec ruins. And his arms are covered in tattoos of women.
Lopez has ties to the Mexican mafia and a long rap sheet. He was serving two life sentences for capital murder and attempted capital murder. He’s also been convicted of aggravated assault and kidnapping.
Lopez, 46, was being transported to a medical appointment on May 12 in a caged area of the bus when he escaped in Leon County, a rural area between Dallas and Houston, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice has said.
The department has said Lopez somehow freed himself from his hand and leg restraints, cut through the expanded metal of the cage and crawled out the bottom. He then attacked the driver, who stopped the bus and got into an altercation with Lopez and they both eventually got off the bus.
A second officer at the rear of the bus then exited and approached Lopez, who got back on the bus and started driving down the road, the department said. The officers fired at Lopez and shot the bus tire, stopping it, the department said. Lopez then got out and ran into the woods.
At some point during the escape, Lopez stabbed the driver, whose wounds weren’t life-threatening, the department said.
Lopez was sentenced to life in prison after being convicted in 2006 of killing a man along the Texas-Mexico border,
A $50,000 reward for information leading to Lopez’s capture is being offered.
Inspector General Cris Love said anyone found to be helping or harboring Lopez will face not only arrest and prosecution, but he believes is also “putting themselves in danger.”
“Lopez has a complete disregard for human life and will do what it takes to avoid capture,” Love said. “We will take this investigation wherever it leads us until Lopez is back in custody.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.