Harvey, fighting in the –58kg category, was drawn in the preliminary round of 16 against the experienced Mexican Perez and put up a good fight despite being 2-0 down at the end of round two.
The British teenager battled back to score twice in round three and force the contest into a deciding fourth round before succumbing 3-2.
Perez’s subsequent progress to the final offered Harvey a second chance via the repechage, where he faced Afghanistan fighter Rohullah Nikpai.
After a cagey opening, Nikpai scored the first round’s only point with just seconds left on the clock, and moved further ahead in the second round, scoring twice to make the score 3-0.
But Harvey tore into his opponent in round three, scoring early and then piling on the pressure to force Nikpai into conceding two kyong-go (warnings) and a gam-jeom (deduction).
It was not enough though, and the British fighter went down 2-1 to miss out on the bronze medal match.
“I’m really disappointed with that as I thought that was my fight,” said Harvey. “I made a few mistakes at the start which I shouldn’t have made, it’s been a big learning curve.
“I think I played to his (Nikpai’s) game, which was what brought me down. I need to stay a bit more active and I need stay more switched on. I need to also to move back more to give him the distance.
“It’s been great to come to my first Olympic Games as I’ve learned so much about the big arena and what to look out for in 2012. But right now I’m just gutted.”
BOA Press Release.