Grieving mother finds closure after suspect arrested in son’s murder

Sebastian Hernandez, 20, is charged with the murder of Christopher Olivarez

The man accused of stabbing Christopher Olivarez is now in custody. His mother, Mary Coronado, sat down with KSAT's John Paul Barajas to speak about the closure she needed.

SAN ANTONIO – A grieving mother is finding closure after a man was charged with her son’s murder at his Southwest Side home in September 2021.

Sebastian Hernandez, 20, is accused of fatally stabbing Christopher Olivarez at his home in the 300 block of Kirk Place, according to San Antonio police.

“I got these chills in my body that ran down. I started crying. It was just like a miracle that they caught this person, and I cried,” said Mary Coronado, Olivarez’s mother, referring to the moments after finding out Hernandez had been arrested.

Reward increased to $17,000 in Christopher Olivarez murder case

As homicide investigators arrived at the scene the day of the murder in 2021, they found several surveillance cameras and a Ring door camera. After reviewing some of the footage, they noticed an unknown man had appeared multiple times, but they could not identify him.

Police and Crime Stoppers released some video clips to the public, hoping for tips that may help identify the unknown man. One of the videos showed a man walking in the backyard of Olivarez’s home while talking on a cellphone. The video was recorded 11 days before Olivarez was stabbed.

SAPD released two other videos from the day of the crime that show a man leaving the home and driving away in Olivarez’s car, a 2014 four-door white Lexus. The vehicle was found abandoned several days after the crime, outside of city limits, according to police.

It wasn’t until recently that police received a credible tip that contained the man’s name -- Hernandez. Detectives contacted Hernandez, and he agreed to come to the office, give a statement and provide a DNA sample. However, at the time, police didn’t have enough evidence to detain him, so he was let go.

Police said the DNA sample was sent to the labs but later came back as a match to forensic evidence found at the crime scene and on the murder weapon -- a knife. Detectives got an arrest warrant for Hernandez on Wednesday. They later arrested him at his home in Central San Antonio.

Hernandez was an acquaintance of Olivarez, according to police. He was taken to the Bexar County Jail late Wednesday.

Coronado said the last nine months since her son’s death have been very hard.

“Crying every day in the shower, trying to make myself strong. I was suffering,” she said.

Olivarez’s mother said she would like the suspect to get the maximum sentence.

“I’m glad he’s caught, but why would you do that? That’s what I want to know. Why did you brutally murder my son like that?” Coronado said.

Coronado said she hopes to fulfill her son’s dreams of traveling.

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About the Authors:

John Paul Barajas is a reporter at KSAT 12. Previously, he worked at KRGV 5 in the Rio Grande Valley. He has a degree from the University of Houston. In his free time, he likes to get a workout in, spend time on the water and check out good eats and drinks.

Cody King is a digital journalist for KSAT 12. She previously worked for WICS/WRSP 20 in Springfield, Illinois.