Police ramp up search efforts for missing Grand Prairie couple
Grand Prairie police have stepped up the search for a couple that disappeared two days ago.
On Thursday, officers flew a drone and searched on horseback near White Rock Lake.
Police searched the area of White Rock Lake where 28-year-old Alfonso Hernandez's car was found Tuesday night after he and 26-year-old Weltzin Garcia were reported missing.
MORE: Police searching for missing Grand Prairie couple
The vehicle was found after police pinged Garcia's cellphone. Her phone was not found there, and police have not uncovered any other clues of their whereabouts.
Grand Prairie police say there are multiple prongs to this criminal investigation. The search just happens to be the most visible, and that is where the initial effort to find the couple took them.
“Weather will not deter us. Rain, shine, cold. We’re out here. We’re not giving up,” Grand Prairie PD officer Mark Beseda said.
Police are determined to find out what happened to the parents of two young children.
Early Tuesday morning, Garcia’s family reported her missing, along with her common-law husband, Hernandez.
Concern was heightened because of a recent domestic violence incident between the couple. Police say Hernandez assaulted Garcia. She then pressed charges and police issued an arrest warrant.
Within hours of the missing person’s report, Hernandez’s black two-door Honda Accord was found abandoned on the west side of White Rock Lake.
“This is where we found the car, so we know they were here last,” officer Beseda said.
On Thursday, the Grand Prairie Police Drone Unit scanned the south and west side of the White Rock Lake.
“They’re out here flying, getting video images, getting still images, and also mapping the area. Just looking for anything that stands out to us,“ Beseda added.
On the ground, the Dallas Police Mounted Patrol - familiar with the lake surroundings - canvassed the area as well.
“We’re still here. We’re still staying strong. We’re still outside, it’s our third day. You know, we’re not giving up,” said Ailed Garza, Weltzin’s cousin.
Garcia’s family members staged near the parking lot where Hernandez’s car was found, while others went out searching for clues.
“We still have them searching back through where the canines trailed through,” Garza added.
Garcia’s family says they have not seen relatives from Hernandez’s family at the White Rock search scene, and they are convinced Garcia would never willingly leave the two young children - a little boy and girl - the couple had together.
“All she ever thought about was her two kids,“ Garza said.
Police say investigators in Grand Prairie have obtained other evidence, such as computers and other electronic devices, through search warrants.