1990 kidnapping, murder of two San Antonio girls still unsolved

South Texas Crime Stories: Heidi Seeman & Erica Botello

The summer of 1990 in San Antonio ended tragically. Not one but two little girls were kidnapped and brutally murdered.

SAN ANTONIO – The summer of 1990 in San Antonio ended tragically. Not one but two little girls were kidnapped and brutally murdered.

Heidi Seeman was abducted on Aug. 4, 1990, and Erica Botello was abducted weeks later on Aug. 23, 1990. 

They would both be found on the same day, but miles apart.

Police later determined the murders were not related. Almost 30 years later, both murders remain unsolved. 

Heidi Seeman

It was the beginning of August in 1990 and 11-year-old Heidi Seeman was enjoying her summer. 

After spending the night at a friend's house, Seeman walked home on Aug. 4. 

Her friend walked with her for awhile, leaving her at Stahl Road and Willow Run Street, it was the last time she was seen. 

Witnesses told police that a shiny red car with tinted windows was seen driving in the area where Seeman was last seen.  

That was all detectives had to go on.

Over the following three weeks, authorities conducted one of the largest searches in the city's history. 

On Aug. 11, Mayor Lila Cockrell declared the day as "Find Heidi Day," and more than 300,000 people gathered to look for her. 

Erica Botello

On Aug. 23, 1990 police got another devastating call -- another girl disappeared. 

Erica Botello, age 7, was outside her west side apartment complex on West 35th Street playing.

Her dad briefly went inside and when he came back Botello was gone. 

Search efforts began for Botello and continued for the next couple of days. 

Aug. 25, 1990

This day would turn tragic as the bodies of both Botello and Seeman were found, but miles apart. 

Botello's body was found less than a mile from her home in a storm drain and Seeman's remains were found on an isolated property in Hays County near Wimberley.

Many mourned the deaths of both girls and their funerals were even held on the same day, Aug. 29. 

The big question lingered -- who committed these murders? 

Three men were accused of killing Botello, but due to lack of evidence none were ever charged. 

No suspect was ever determined in Seeman's case.

Search efforts for her resulted in the creation of the Heidi Search Center. 

The Heidi Search Center helped in locating more than 4,000 missing persons throughout the years, but closed its doors in early 2018 because there wasn't enough funding.

If you have any information about the Heidi Seeman or Erica Botello case you can call the San Antonio Police Department Cold Case Tip Line at 210-207-7401. 

About the Author:

Erica Hernandez is an Emmy award-winning journalist with15 years of experience in the broadcast news business. Erica has covered a wide array of stories all over Central and South Texas. She's currently the court reporter and cohost of the podcast Texas Crime Stories.