Alleged drunken driver charged after 2-year old killed in hit-and-run in southwest Houston, police say

Suspect was out on bond on DWI charge in Collin County

HOUSTON – A 2-year-old little boy has died after a hit-and-run believed to be caused by an intoxicated driver in southwest Houston Saturday afternoon, officers with the Houston Police Department said.

Officers said Rene Alfredo Alvarado Lopez, 22, is charged with intoxication manslaughter and failure to stop and render aid in the 338th State District Court. The charges of intoxication manslaughter and failure to stop and render aid are second-degree felonies. They carry a possible penalty of up to 20 years behind bars, HPD said.

The incident happened at an apartment complex located at 8400 Nairn Street near Bissonnet around 4:25 p.m. According to HPD, Lopez was driving a green Dodge Ram pickup truck through the parking lot of the apartment complex when he struck 2-year-old Elder Orellana who was walking in the driveway area. Lopez then drove off, investigators said. Paramedics pronounced the child dead at the scene.

Sean Teare with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office said witnesses in the area stopped the vehicle and detained the suspect before police arrived.

Officers said they questioned Lopez, determined he was intoxicated, and took him into custody.

According to court records, Lopez was out on bond for another drunk driving-related case out of Collin County. Court records show he was arrested last year in Plano, Texas.

That same year, months later, the suspect was charged and indicted for possession of a controlled substance. The records show Lopez, “failed to appear or contact court. Defendant’s name was called three times at the courtroom door. No answer. Bond forfeited. Judgment nisi against principal and sureties in the amount of $2,000.00 Alias Capias to be issued for the arrest of the Defendant. New bond set at $4,000.00.”

A Harris County presiding officer referenced those two prior cases when she set bond at $200,000, $100,000 for each felony charge.

“The court finds that Mr. Alvarado Lopez is a flight risk and is a risk to the public safety. The court finds that high bonds are necessary in each of these cases, not only to ensure the safety of the community, but also to secure Mr. Alvarado Lopez’s presence for his upcoming court case,” the presiding officer said.

About the Authors:

Moriah Ballard joined the KPRC 2 digital team in the fall of 2021. Prior to becoming a digital content producer in Southeast Texas and a Houstonian, Moriah was an award-winning radio host in her hometown of Lorain, Ohio and previously worked as a producer/content creator in Cleveland. Her faith, family, and community are her top passions.