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'Someone took her away' | Family of road rage victim says arrest is step toward justice

Police made an arrest after 22-year-old Elizabeth Lopez was shot and killed in South Austin. Her family shared the memories she leaves behind.

AUSTIN, Texas — A victim's family is one step closer to finding answers after police made an arrest in what they've called a road rage case. U.S. Marshals arrested Manolo Gonzalez after a deadly shooting along Stassney Lane on Jan. 6. 

On Jan. 11, the victim was identified as 22-year-old Elizabeth Lopez. Lopez's cousin spoke with KVUE but asked that we do not use her face or name.

"She was the best cousin I ever met. I wouldn't ask for no one else," Lopez's cousin said. 

Funny, outgoing and a loving daughter, sister and girlfriend – those are all the words Lopez's cousin used to describe her. Now, she's left holding her memory close. 

"She had an impact on everybody. When we lost her, it affected every single one of us," she said.

Credit: Angela Lopez

On Jan. 6, Austin police said officers found Lopez dead in her car after she had been shot while driving on Stassney Lane.

According to an arrest affidavit, police interviewed two minors who were in the car at the crash. They say when Lopez reached the intersection of East Stassney Lane and South Interstate 35 southbound, she lost control and swerved into another lane. Police say suspect Manolo Gonzalez followed Lopez's car, pulled up next to her and shot her. This caused Lopez's car to crash into an apartment complex fence. 

"I just think about Elizabeth. She's really gone," her cousin said. 

The single mother leaves behind two boys. 

"Her babies are still here, and they don't know that their mom is gone. Someone took her away," Lopez's cousin said. 

Credit: DuLusa

The affidavit states information from one of Lopez's family members, an officer and Crime Stoppers led police to Gonzalez. Now that police have made an arrest, this is what Lopez's cousin is focused on. 

"I just pray that we get justice. I don't want them to get death penalty, but I want them to suffer because what they did to my cousin is not right," Lopez's cousin said. 

She's holding Elizabeth's memory close while also keeping it alive. 

"We're not going to forget about Elizabeth, but it's not going to be easy for us to live our own lives," she said. 


The suspect faces a first-degree murder charge. According to court documents, he admitted to the shooting in an interview with police. He is now being held in the Travis County Jail on a $1 million bond. 

Lopez's family is raising money for funeral expenses online. If you'd like to donate, visit their GoFundMe.

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