DPS: Initial ID in fatal Houston Co. rollover accident was incorrect

Marcelo Perez (Source: Houston County Jail)
Marcelo Perez (Source: Houston County Jail)

HOUSTON COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - After Texas Department of Public Safety troopers further investigated a fatal rollover accident that occurred just outside of Crockett on July 5, they learned that the man that was ejected from the vehicle was not the driver.

In addition, the man was initially identified as Marcelo Contreras-Perez, 33, of Alto, because authorities thought he was the sole occupant of the wrecked vehicle. The man pronounced dead at the scene turned out to be Usiel Ramos-Hernandez, 28, of Marquez.

Hendry said Perez' ID was found at the scene of the accident. Although Hernandez' injuries prevented a positive match to the ID, he looked similar to the man pictured in the ID. In addition, authorities received a phone tip that stated that Perez was the only person in the vehicle when the accident occurred, Hendry said.

DPS troopers arrested the real Perez Saturday and charged him with failure to stop and render aid at an accident involving death and criminally negligent homicide. No bail has been set for Perez's charges at this time.

Trooper David Hendry, a DPS spokesman, said the accident occurred about 9:45 p.m. on July 5. He said Perez was driving on State Highway 7 when the wreck occurred about 6 miles west of Crockett. Perez' 2003 Ford Explorer went off the road to the left and rolled over. Hernandez, who was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the vehicle.

Hendry said alcohol is believed to have been a factor in the wreck, but Perez was arrested so long after the accident, that a blood alcohol test might have been inconclusive.

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