‘No evidence of foul play’ in death of Erica Hernandez, authorities say

Police are searching for 40-year-old Erica Hernandez, who has been missing since Sunday, April 18, 2021. (HPD)

HOUSTON – Pearland police said Friday that there’s “no evidence of foul play” in the death of Erica Hernandez, the mother who went missing April 18, whose body was found in a submerged vehicle in a retention pond on May 11.

RELATED: ‘I am heartbroken’: Erica Hernandez positively identified as body found inside of vehicle pulled from Pearland lake, police says

“The investigation indicated this was a tragic series of events that led to the death of Ms. Hernandez,” the Pearland Police Department said in a news release Friday. “The Galveston County Medical Examiner ruled the cause of death as drowning and the manner of death as accidental. There is no evidence of foul play in the case.”

Hernandez’s vehicle, a 2020 black GMC Acadia, was found after cell phone triangulation data, along with video footage, led Houston Police detectives to search the lake in Pearland. Authorities found Hernandez’s body in the submerged vehicle.

Vehicle pulled from lake in Pearland belongs to missing Erica Hernandez, police say

Police shared this sequence of events.

“The results of the investigation by the Pearland Police Department, in conjunction with the Houston Police Department showed Ms. Hernandez had visited a friend’s house on the date of her disappearance. She then left this location between the hours of 2:30 a.m.- 2:45 a.m. and went to a second friend’s house arriving at 2:58 a.m. and leaving at 4:05 a.m.  The route Ms. Hernandez took could be consistent with a route she would use to go home.  Ms. Hernandez was observed on video turning right on Reflection Bay from Shadow Creek Parkway at 4:24 a.m. leading to the area of the retention pond (located at the intersection of Reflection Bay and N. Clear Lake Loop) where her vehicle was located. Video footage and cell phone data support the travel times and locations of Ms. Hernandez that morning.”

About the Author:

Amanda Cochran is an Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist. She specializes in Texas features, consumer and business news and local crime coverage.