UPDATE: Man escapes from Border Patrol custody in Edinburg

EDINBURG — A man escaped from U.S. Border Patrol custody here after a trip to an emergency room Tuesday.

The incident happened shortly before noon, according to information Rebecca Villanueva obtained from the McAllen Border Patrol Station. Villanueva, who works for the Laurie P. Andrews PAWS Center, said the animal shelter was closed down for about two hours as a precautionary measure. Though, she added, Border Patrol agents did not direct her to close the facility.

“We noticed that there was a helicopter surrounding the area, and we learned that IDEA (Edinburg campus) had gotten a soft shutdown. So we just got the team together, assessed the situation, reached out to the McAllen Border Patrol office, and they confirmed they were searching for someone,” she said. “We had a building full of people, staff, volunteers, guests. So we shut down to make sure we kept everyone safe.”

Border Patrol agents issued a news release at about 2 p.m. Tuesday, asking for the public’s help in finding Edgar Lopez-Morales, an undocumented immigrant who had escaped custody after being medically cleared from South Texas Health System’s emergency room in Edinburg.

Edgar Lopez-Morales escaped from a parking lot at the facility, according to an agency news release.

“The escape occurred when the agents attempted to place the subject inside their vehicle,” the release stated.

Federal, state and local agencies actively searched for the subject to no avail.

Anyone with information is asked to call Border Patrol at (800) 863-9382 or call 911.