TCSO identifies suspect in kidnapping, Del Valle murder

DEL VALLE, TEXAS - The Travis County Sheriff’s Office say the man who kidnapped an Elgin woman in Bastrop and killed her in Del Valle before shooting himself on Feb. 15 has died from his injuries.

The sheriff’s office says Charles Werchan, 26, kidnapped Ibeth Aurora Lopez, 26, at gunpoint from a Bastrop Sports Clips around 1:30 p.m. Feb. 15.

According to the Bastrop Police Department, officers were called to Sports Clips on Highway 71 at 1:30 p.m. on reports of a disturbance in progress. Officers were told that a man had entered the business and demanded that Lopez, who worked there, leave with him. The suspect knew Lopez. She repeatedly refused until the suspect displayed a handgun. Lopez then complied and left with the suspect. 

Lopez and the suspect left in a vehicle driving westbound on Texas 71, Bastrop PD said.  

During that time, TCSO deputies were blocking Hwy 71 for a Del Valle student protest. As the suspect and victim approached the roadblock, the suspect turned onto Burch Road.

A Travis County deputy saw Werchan’s vehicle parked with the doors open. Another deputy and a trainee saw Werchan and Lopez walking down the road. The sheriff’s office said as the deputies approached, Werchan fatally shot Lopez. Deputies opened fire on Werchan and at the same time he shot himself in the head. The sheriff’s office said Werchan died from his injuries after being transported to St. David’s South Austin Medical Center.

Crystal Jaramillo, Lopez's sister-in-law, said that Werchan was Lopez's ex-boyfriend. She said he had been harassing Lopez and that Lopez had filed complaints with police but was told that they could not do anything until he was "caught in the act." 

Jaramillo said that Lopez and the suspect had broken up roughly two years ago but he continued to show up at her jobs and unannounced at the family home. 

Lopez leaves behind an 8-year-old daughter who is not related to the suspect, according to Jaramillo.

"She was a hardworking single mom. She had two jobs this past holiday season. Always did her best for her daughter. She will be terribly missed," Jaramillo said.

Lopez also worked at the Creative World Learning Center in Manor. 

Scott Perry, spokesperson for Sport Clips Haircuts, released the following statement on behalf of the business: 

"We are saddened by this tragedy and are greatly concerned for those who were impacted. Our team members are very important to us and we have reached out to them and are confident they are being cared for and are in good hands. We offer counseling services and additional support as needed. We are working with authorities and out of respect for all team members, clients and family members, we will reopen Friday so that we may serve our clients in the comfortable atmosphere they have come to expect."

The incident is being investigated as a Capital Murder case.

© 2017 KVUE-TV


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