Scared Monkeys Discussion Forum

Missing, Exploited and True Crime => Unsolved Crimes => Topic started by: Nut44x4 on February 24, 2009, 01:01:24 PM



Title: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (ALL 13 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 24, 2009, 01:01:24 PM
Body Count in N.M. Desert Rises to 10

Investigators Unearth More Remains From An Albuquerque Construction Site

Investigators searching an Albuquerque, N.M., construction site discovered the skeletal remains of four more people today, including those of an unidentified woman and her fetus, police said.

In the three weeks since a woman stumbled upon some bones while walking her dog, police say they have discovered the bones of 10 people at the site, and they are trying to identify them and figure out who put them there.

On Feb. 17, one set of remains was identified as Victoria Chavez, 24, a prostitute last seen by her family in 2003.

It was Chavez's skeleton, along with partial remains of another, that touched off a massive search for more human remains in what is slated to become a new housing development.

Police said they are monitoring a list of missing prostitutes compiled by the missing person's unit. Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz told The Associated Press today that detectives are looking at suspects, but it's too premature to discuss them.
Chavez, 24, lived a hard life, logging arrests for prostitution and drugs. But in the months before her disappearance she had lived at home, working at a local burger joint and thinking about a career as a nurse.

"I was in denial," her mother, Mary Gutierrez, told ABCNews.com of the day she learned the bones were her daughter's. "I said, 'You must be wrong.'"

When police responded to the dogwalking woman's report, they began digging and found more bones. And the results surprised police -- they came from two different people, including Chavez. About 48 hours later, bones from a third person were found several yards away.

Since then, police and forensics experts have been at the site every day, searching the area mostly by hand and using rakes and shovels. The area totals about 92 acres, though the search has been narrowed to a few specific areas.

Police have pulled up satellite records from 2003 onward and have narrowed the search, for now, using old dirt trails that have long since been plowed over.

Albuquerque Police Officer Nadine Hamby told ABC News the area was sometimes used in the past as a place to dump trash or dead coyotes. Police have also found buried pets, including dogs and rabbits since they began searching the site.

"We found a whole Noah's Ark out there," she said.

No Suspect, Only Speculation

So far, the only full skeleton found has been Chavez's, Hamby said. The process of identifying the other two -- investigators are unsure yet even if they're male or female -- could take months or longer, she said, depending on whether there is usable DNA or dental records.

The bones were believed to have been unearthed by excavation work in the area, Hamby said, both to prepare the land for construction and to dig culverts to divert rainwater away from houses already built in the neighborhood.

It remains unclear who owns the property where police are digging. The developer was identified by police as Longford Homes, though it's company spokeswoman Susan Berger said Longford does not own that lot.


'There'll Never Be Closure'

Chavez's family, heartbroken and still trying to process the news of her death, is hoping for answers.

Gutierrez said her daughter was funny and outgoing and loved to tease family members. She said she knew her daughter was leading a dangerous life but that she learned the extent of her daughter's activities only after talking to police.

Chavez, she said, "got caught up in the world with the wrong crowd," Gutierrez said. "Things happened, but she never brought it into my house."

Gutierrez said her daughter lived with her for eight months before her disappearance.

"She was getting clean," she said. "She was getting her life together."

Gutierrez said she last saw her daughter on a night the whole family was supposed to go out together. Chavez, she said, got a call from a boyfriend and told her mom she'd meet up with them later that night. She never showed up.

Gutierrez said that when her daughter didn't come home, she assumed she'd gone back to her wild life.

"I thought, in due time -- she's done this before -- she'll call me," Gutierrez said. But that call never came and in March 2004, Gutierrez reported her daughter missing.

There are 24 adults listed as missing in Albuquerque. Hamby said police will continue canvassing the area until they are confident there are no more remains to be found there.

But knowing now where Chavez has been hasn't helped the family heal. Her daughters, now 12 and 13, are living with Gutierrez's sister. "There'll never be closure on something like this," she said. "I want justice. I want to find out who did this to her. And how she died."

http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=6942996&page=1


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count now at 10 / New Mexico
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 24, 2009, 01:04:30 PM
More buried bodies found in NM desert, total at 10

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Four more bodies have been uncovered from the mesa west of Albuquerque, including a fetus found inside its mother's skeleton, bringing the total remains found in the area to 10.

The search for bodies began 2 1/2 weeks ago after hikers discovered some remains in an area recently razed for a housing development.

Since then, teams of detectives, anthropologists and medical investigators have excavated an area 10 yards by 30 yards, uncovering some bones in graves and others scattered either by animals or the development project, Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz said Monday.

Police suspect one person is responsible for burying the bodies because of how close the bodies were found together in what was a remote area when the bodies were estimated to have been buried, between 2000 and 2005.

Only one set of remains has been identified. Those bones belonged to Victoria Chavez, whose family provided dental records when they reported her missing in 2004. They and police have described Chavez as struggling with drug addiction and working as a prostitute.

The body of the pregnant woman and her fetus were found Monday. Schultz says the remains of two other people were found Saturday.

Forensics commander Paul Feist said about 25 investigators will continue to dig at the scene until "we get everything possible."

So far, only three skulls, including Chavez's, have been recovered, making identification of the other remains difficult and time consuming, Schultz said.

Homicide Sgt. Carlos Argueta said identification of the remains could take up to a year and the investigation into the cause of death and any possible suspects even longer.

Police said they are monitoring a list of missing prostitutes compiled by the missing person's unit. Chavez was on the list of missing women with prostitution and drug connections, which begins with a woman missing in 2001 and concludes with a woman reported missing in 2006.

Schultz said detectives are looking at suspects, but it's too premature to discuss them.

However, detectives have said two names of deceased men have surfaced as possible suspects. One was killed in 2006 by a pimp who caught the man stuffing a prostitute's body into a car trunk. The other is a well-known pimp who died of natural causes in 2009 and who had pictures of missing prostitutes in his home.
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jHoyOxB-E50OhIqc4aIyyfP0WNKQD96HJQA84


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count now at 10 / New Mexico
Post by: sleddogs on February 24, 2009, 07:42:55 PM
These some of the known missing women, let their names not be forgotten.

Darlene Trujillo missing since 2001

Sonia Lente missing since 2002

Monica Candalaria missing since 2003/BODY FOUND
(http://tbn3.google.com/images?q=tbn:dtaLDvsHcGp3tM:http://www.bernco.gov/upload/images/Monica-Candelaria.jpg)

Jamie Barela missing since 2004 /

Cinnamon Elks missing since 2004 /BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18903678_240X180.jpg)

Veronica Romero missing since 2004/BODY FOUND
(http://kob.com/kobtvimages/veronica_romero.jpg)

Victoria Chavez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://helpfindthemissing.org/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=851&stc=1&thumb=1&d=1234301967)

Michelle Gina Valdez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND w/Fetus
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v63/Maverick1862/murder%20victims/GinaMichelleValdez.jpg)

Virginia Cloven missing since 2004

Doreen Marquez missing since 2004

Julie Nieto missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18908539_240X180.jpg)

Evelyn Salazar missing since 2004
Anselma Guerra missing since 2004
Anna Vigil missing since 2005
Felipa Gonzales missing since 2005
Nina Herron missing since 2005
Shawntell Waltes missing since 2006
Leah Peebles missing since 2006

http://www.topix.com/forum/source/kob-new-mexico/TV7FGN5QNJ4GK78A8


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count now at 10 / New Mexico
Post by: sleddogs on February 24, 2009, 08:34:20 PM

Albuquerque police say 4 more buried bodies have been found on mesa; total now stands at 10

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Four more bodies have been uncovered from the mesa west of Albuquerque, including a fetus found inside its mother's skeleton, bringing the total remains found in the area to 10.

The search for bodies began 2½ weeks ago after hikers discovered some remains in an area recently razed for a housing development.

Since then, teams of detectives, anthropologists and medical investigators have excavated an area 10 yards by 30 yards, uncovering some bones in graves and others scattered either by animals or the development project, Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz said Monday.

Police suspect one person is responsible for burying the bodies because of how close the bodies were found together in what was a remote area when the bodies were estimated to have been buried, between 2000 and 2005.

Only one set of remains has been identified. Those bones belonged to Victoria Chavez, whose family provided dental records when they reported her missing in 2004. They and police have described Chavez as struggling with drug addiction and working as a prostitute.

The body of the pregnant woman and her fetus were found Monday. Schultz says the remains of two other people were found Saturday.

Forensics commander Paul Feist said about 25 investigators will continue to dig at the scene until "we get everything possible."

So far, only three skulls, including Chavez's, have been recovered, making identification of the other remains difficult and time consuming, Schultz said.

Homicide Sgt. Carlos Argueta said identification of the remains could take up to a year and the investigation into the cause of death and any possible suspects even longer.

Police said they are monitoring a list of missing prostitutes compiled by the missing person's unit. Chavez was on the list of missing women with prostitution and drug connections, which begins with a woman missing in 2001 and concludes with a woman reported missing in 2006.

Schultz said detectives are looking at suspects, but it's too premature to discuss them.

However, detectives have said two names of deceased men have surfaced as possible suspects. One was killed in 2006 by a pimp who caught the man stuffing a prostitute's body into a car trunk. The other is a well-known pimp who died of natural causes in 2009 and who had pictures of missing prostitutes in his home.

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/wire/sns-ap-desert-bodies-found,1,7369280.story



Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count now at 10 / New Mexico
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 25, 2009, 04:27:21 PM
 ::MonkeyNoNo::

11th set of remains
found on mesa
Published : Wednesday, 25 Feb 2009, 12:12 PM MST

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Police have discovered the remains of an 11th person on Albuquerque's West Mesa, News 13 has learned.

Police have also been able to identify a second woman they believe may have been a prostitute. Her name has not been released.

Since Feb. 1, investigators have found the remains of 11 people at a construction site near 118th Street and Sen. Dennis Chavez Boulevard SW.

At least five of the bodies are female.

Police have not released a cause of death for any of the bodies, and are hesitant to say if any were murdered.

More information on the new discoveries is expected Wednesday afternoon.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_mesa_bodies_11th_set_200902251210


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count now at 11 / New Mexico
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 25, 2009, 04:31:35 PM
FBI assists West Mesa search
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29371258/
The FBI is assisting in the search for more bodies buried on a 100-acre site on Albuquerque's Southwest Mesa.

Ten bodies have been uncovered in the operation - including a fetus. The search is entering its third week.

"The Federal Bureau of Investigation has been assisting us through the process of identifying the remains," said APD spokesman John Walsh.

About two dozen officials were working the crime scene Monday morning and Walsh says police are being rotated in and out of the operation in order to keep other cases from falling through the cracks.

"We've been rotating on a daily basis the personnel that are participating on the physical scene out on the West Mesa and that way no other case falls to the wayside," he said.

Of the ten bodies recovered, Victoria Chavez is the only one that has been identified.

Police suspect that all of the remains recovered so far are those of young women. They say they believe all of the makeshift burials were undertaken by the same person in 2004 and 2005.

The FBI is assisting in the investigation and using the agency's vast databases to attempt to identify the victims.

A portion of each set of remains is being sent to FBI laboratories in Quantico, Virginia for identification.

Police say that the search could expand beyond the original 100-acre site and could continue for months.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Deadly crime scene consumes APD commander
A high-ranking commander working the crime scene where ten bodies have now been found on Albuquerque's West Mesa is talking about the gruesome discoveries. 

APD Commander Paul Feist says he's been so consumed by the case, he hasn't been home for a dinner with his family for two weeks.

"[It's] definitely the biggest case I've ever worked on. I've been with the department [for] 22 years, by far the biggest case," said Commander Paul Feist.

For the past three weeks, Feist has set aside the pen and paperwork for a shovel.

"It is a lot of shovel and pick work, it's a lot of sifting and actually in the dirt," Feist said.

Commander Feist, who heads up an entire division of APD, has even made a few of the gruesome discoveries himself.

"I've found a couple of them, full skeletons," Feist said.

Over the past three days, investigators have found three more bodies, one of them a pregnant woman in her first trimester. Police are including that fetus in the now total number of 10 bodies.

"You know they're people. You take it home and realize that was somebody's loved one. We want to do our best to identify them and return them to their loved one," Feist said.

Victoria Chavez, a known prostitute and drug addict, is the only person identified.

Police think the other bodies are likely young women as well. Authorities believe they were all buried by the same person between 2000 and 2005.

Commander Feist says he's solely concentrating on digging and preserving evidence.

"I couldn't imagine if that'd been one of my family members or a friend that I knew, not knowing for this long and finding them in that matter, we're making sure we're taking very good care of them," Feist said. 

Police say the case has attracted so much attention, strangers are visiting the dirt lot to check it out. The police chief says anyone caught in the crime scene will be arrested.

http://kob.com/article/stories/S801500.shtml?cat=500



Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count now at 11 / New Mexico
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 26, 2009, 11:15:02 AM
11th set of bones unearthed
2 now have ID's

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The second woman identified from 11 sets of bones collected from makeshift graves on the mesa should be remembers as a loving mother rather than for her rough lifestyle, he father told KRQE News 13 Wednesday.
Earlier in the day Albuquerque police revealed Jane Doe No. 8 to be Michelle Gina Valdez  who was 22 when her father reported her missing four years ago. Medical investigators identified her through dental records.
"She was my daughter and didn't deserve to be buried in the desert." Dan Valdez told KRQE News 13.
Investigators digging on the West Mesa near 118th Street SW and Sen. Dennis Chavez Boulevard have now unearthed 11 sets of skeletal remains including Valdez's unborn fetus. The child would have been Dan Valdez's third grandchild.
"She was a wonderful kid," he said. "Everybody liked her and loved her.
"She was a fun person to be with, always smiling joking. Those were the good things I'll remember."
Police have hedged their comments as to the circumstances of the women's deaths and have not reported any official causes of death. However Valdez and the previously identified victim, Victoria Chavez who was last seen in June 2004, had something in common.
"Ms. Valdez does have a prior criminal history and appears she had been arrested for prostitution and drug charges," Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz said at a news conference Wednesday morning. "We have identified two of the victims and able to link these two victims by having a similar lifestyle.
"Understand that these two victims at some point in time their lives crossed paths by having contact with the same individual or individuals."
Chavez also was a drug user engaged in prostitution, her mother told police when reporting the woman's disappearance.
Valdez said he wants his daughter to be remembered as a human being, a good person and a loving mother regardless of her past. She disappeared in September of 2004, and since then Valdez has been waiting for her to come home.
"Yes, I was hoping she was alive until proven otherwise," Valdez said. "I had faith in God he was going to keep her safe and bring her home one day.
"Well, He's brought her home."
Valdez added he knows one day he will see his daughter again in heaven.
He also said he is grateful for closure and knows that there are still at least eight other families of women found on the mesa waiting to receive the phone call he got last night.
The search for more bodies was called off early Wednesday because of high winds raking the bare earth of the subdivision site where a woman walking her dog found the first human bone three weeks ago.
Investigators have said they have a list of about two dozen women, many involved in prostitution, who disappeared several years ago. They have asked family members to submit medical and dental records that might help identify the remains found in southwest Albuquerque.
http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_mesa_graves_yield_wonderful_kid_200902252325


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 11 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 26, 2009, 12:31:53 PM
Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico)
 
February 26, 2009 Thursday 
 
Pregnant Victim Identified; Body Count Reaches 11;
Both ID'd Women Were Prostitutes

Police have identified a second victim whose body was buried on the far Southwest Mesa. Police Chief Ray Schultz also announced Wednesday that the body count on the dusty, partly developed patch of mesa near Dennis Chavez and 118th SW had reached 11.

Late Tuesday, investigators unearthed another nearly complete set of remains less than 20 feet from where the 10th victim's body was found Monday morning.

Both of the identified victims were female prostitutes with criminal histories. Both were in their 20s and were reported missing less than six months apart in late 2004 and early 2005.

"We have linked two of the victims with similar lifestyles now," Schultz told a news conference Wednesday. "That gives detectives a good place to start. This is where the real work begins. At some point in time, their lives crossed paths ... whether it was each other or some other individual who was involved in their deaths."

The chief reiterated that police believe all the victims were female and were buried on the mesa by the same person, but said it would be "too premature" to say the deaths are the work of a serial killer.

The second identified victim, Gina Michelle Valdez, was pregnant when her body was buried, police say. Investigators uncovered her nearly complete skeleton, along with that of her 4-month-old fetus, on Saturday as they continued excavating what Schultz calls "one of the largest crime scenes in Albuquerque history."

The Office of the Medical Investigator identified Valdez's remains through dental records late Tuesday, Schultz said.

Her father had reported her missing in February 2005.

The first set of remains, found more than two weeks ago, belonged to Victoria Chavez, whose family reported her as a missing "prostitute and drug user" in 2004.

Chavez and Valdez were both among the names of 24 prostitutes or suspected prostitutes reported missing from 2001 to 2006, Albuquerque police Cmdr. Mike Geier said Wednesday. 
http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=574&topicId=100020825&docId=l:932516890&start=2


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 11 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on February 26, 2009, 04:10:13 PM
Mother thinks daughter buried on West Mesa

An Albuquerque mother say she thinks her daughter is one of the ten bodies found buried out on the West Mesa.
Jamie Barela was just 15-years-old when she went missing in 2004, along with her 25-year-old cousin Evelyn Salazar.
Barela and her cousin said they were headed to Wilson Park, near Kirtland Air Force Base, and said they would be back in an hour, but the two never returned.

“They were like best friends, sisters,” said Jamie's mother Jayne Barela.

When Barela's mother found out about the human remains discovered on the West Mesa, she had a bad feeling.

“Everybody is telling me to pray, but that's not getting me nowhere. I’m hearing they're finding bodies. It's just scary," Barela's mother said.

Investigators have now dug up ten bodies, including a fetus, from the 100-acre crime scene near 118th Street and Dennis Chavez.

Jayne says if her daughter is one of the bodies found, it will give her some closure.

“I'm hoping it’s her so we can go ahead with our lives and have our memorial service or whatever we need to do," she said.

Barela's mother admits her daughter was experimenting with drugs. She is also aware that Salazar had some run-ins with the law.

Court records show that Salazar had been convicted twice for dealing drugs and just three months before the two vanished, she had been convicted of prostitution.

The only body identified so far has been Victoria Chavez. Police say she was a known prostitute and drug addict.

Police think all of the bodies are likely women.

Barela's mother, who is suffering from colon cancer, says she's hoping investigators will identify the remains soon.

“Because of my cancer, I want to know if it's her because I don't know how much [time] I have in my life," Jayne said.

Investigators say they found more bones on Tuesday, but they don't think they belong to any new bodies.

Police say the search could continue for months.
http://kob.com/article/stories/S804136.shtml?cat=517


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 11 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on February 26, 2009, 04:15:54 PM
OMI Takes On West Mesa Bones Mystery
As Albuquerque police continue the search for more bodies on the west mesa, the Office of the Medical Investigator has five sets of remains to identify.

Police have confirmed that bones from six bodies have been uncovered in the desert west of the city in the last two weeks. One set of bones has been identified as belonging to Victoria Chavez, a known prostitute and drug user. Chavez was last seen in 2003 and was reported missing in 2004.

The remains were uncovered in a 100-square-foot area of an under-construction housing development after police were called by hikers who found some bones.

As the case expands, there are those who hope their missing loved one can be accounted for. One of those, Toby Romero, lives right next to the dig site.

Romero said his niece, Monica Candelaria, vanished on her 22nd birthday in 2003. He said her short life was troubled by drug use, which fits the profile of missing women police are seeking.
"There was a rumor circulating at the time that she had been killed and her body buried on the west side," Romero said.

Romero said his niece, Monica Candelaria, vanished on her 22nd birthday in 2003. He said her short life was troubled by drug use, which fits the profile of missing women police are seeking.

Romero said he is resigned to the worst.

"At this time we'd just like to see my sister get some closure," he said. "She's been through a lot."

OMI will not discuss publicly details of the investigation, but professor Ozzie Pearson of the University of New Mexico's anthropology department said a major key in determining identification is finding an intact skull and matching that to dental records of the missing person.

Pearson said there are other clues as well, such as examining the pelvis for determining gender and long bones to help identify height.

Other bones could complete a rough profile.

"The size of the brow ridges, the size of the mastoid bone, the general size of the jaw and face can tell males apart from females, 90 percent," Pearson said.

In a mass burial site, identification is complicated by remains being mixed together, and unless there's damage to the remains it may be impossible to determine the cause of death.

"If a person just bled and a knife didn't cut into a bone, you might not be able to tell what caused it," Pearson said.

Pearson said determining age, sex and race can take as little as an hour. If there are dental records and a skull, a positive ID can be made in one to two days.

But, he said, if there's no scientific evidence for comparison, it could take months or years for a positive ID.

http://www.koat.com/news/18746145/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 11 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on February 26, 2009, 04:19:46 PM
Expert Offers Theory On West Mesa Remains

ALBUQUERQUE -- One crime expert says the 10 sets of human remains on the west mesa might be the end product of a "commercial enterprise."

As the body count on Amole Mesa moved from three to six to 10, the case is raising the possibility of a serial killer. While police have not used that term yet, they have indicated they think the remains are the work of a single person, who may or may not be dead.

When he's not teaching communication and journalism at the University of New Mexico, Dirk Gibson studies serial killers and has written a book on the subject with a second book in progress.
Gibson thinks Amole Mesa is the workshop of a commercial serial killer.

"A person who is not motivated by lust -- the traditional FBI profile --not motivated by revenge," he said. "They want to make some money."

Gibson points to a long list of profit-motivated serial killers, ranging from the so-called "black widow" who disposed of husbands for insurance money to mob hitmen who worked on a contract basis.

on a contract basis.

"My theory is someone knew the west mesa, it was familiar to them, not real close to their home and when they were told 'get rid of some bodies,' it was a good location," Gibson said.

Gibson added he does not think this is the work of a killer seeking 15 minutes of fame.

"This person didn't want the bodies discovered, didn't want the publicity, the clamor, the notoriety," he said.

Gibson said there most likely is no reason for the public to panic. He theorizes those buried on the mesa are victims of opportunity among the homeless or involved in drugs or crime.

http://www.koat.com/news/18788697/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 11 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on February 26, 2009, 06:19:21 PM
Google map where remains are located

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&ll=35.031613,-106.750116&spn=0.049408,0.076904&t=h&z=14&msid=117871799462650900227.000463c52ea7c39082782

from google earth you can see the grave sites in two areas.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 11 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 27, 2009, 01:08:16 PM
The more they dig, the more bodies they find...

Of the 11 bodies found buried in an Albuquerque mesa only two have been identified: Michelle Valdez, top left, and Victoria Chavez, bottom left. Valdez's first trimester fetus was among the remains found.

http://www.abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=6965497&page=1


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 11 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on February 27, 2009, 10:02:18 PM
Count at 13.

Police: West Mesa Mystery Not A Current Danger

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- As of Friday afternoon, Albuquerque police have found bones belonging to 13 people buried in shallow graves on the city's West Mesa.

The discoveries at the dig site near 118th St. and Dennis Chavez Blvd. are making a lot of people nervous because there are still many questions surrounding a police investigation. People also want to know who buried the bodies and how long they have been there.

Friday morning, crews found human hair at the site and found more skeletal remains.

Neighbors said they are worried that the body was recently dumped, but authorities said that was not the case and the body has been buried for years.

People who live near the dig site also said they want to know who is responsible for dumping the bodies on the mesa, even though police said no one should be in fear of a serial killer on the loose.

Some neighbors said that's still not a comfort.

Iris Acosta said, "I am worried because it's like they are finding girls and not guys, and we can't go out anymore. I'm scared that someone is going to get us or something."

Cathrine Chacon said, "He could be around my neighborhood. He could be out in the streets. He could be burying bodies somewhere else. It is spooky. I want him to be found."

Police said they will continue looking for more bodies on the West Mesa and that their investigation is just getting under way.

http://www.koat.com/news/18814477/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 28, 2009, 09:09:32 AM
West Mesa investigation eyes known perps

Albuquerque police said they are looking into several possible suspects who may be responsible for the bodies buried on the West Mesa.

As searchers discovered the 13th body Friday at the site near Dennis Chavez and 118th Street, investigators said they are still unwilling to say a serial killer is responsible.

However, police also say a single person may have disposed of all the bodies they've found on the mesa.

One person police are looking at could be Lorenzo Montoya, a man killed in 2006--the same time prostitutes stopped vanishing from the streets of the Duke City.

Even back then, police said Montoya could be responsible for multiple murders.

Montoya drew the attention of police in December 2006 in what police call one of the most bizarre crimes most of them had seen.

The 39-year-old Montoya had taken a stripper to his West Side mobile home to dance for him. What Montoya didn't know is that the dancer, 19-year-old Shericka Hill, had her boyfriend waiting outside.

After an hour, the boyfriend, 18-year-old Federick Williams went to check on Hill.

Williams and Montoya then confronted each other with guns and Montoya was shot dead. Williams then found Hill dead inside the mobile home.

Police said Montoya had tied Hill up with a rope made out of duct tape. Investigators said the way the rope was made suggested Montoya had done it before.

Another reason Montoya is getting attention is how close he lived to the dig site--about two miles.

Back in 2006, there were dirt trails that led directly from Montoya's mobile home park to the dig site.

Police are careful not to say the person responsible for the recovered bodies is dead, but APD is also confident a serial killer is not on the streets of Albuquerque.

"What we are finding is that all these remains are old," APD Chief Ray Schultz said. "They have been there for a number of years now. Had we been finding fresh bodies that had been placed out on the mesa in past days or weeks, then I'd be a lot more concerned."

Police are also looking at other suspects, including a well-known pimp who died a month ago. He had pictures of missing prostitutes in his home.
http://kob.com/article/stories/s810040.shtml?cat=516
comments at link


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 28, 2009, 10:18:07 AM
More bones found in NM desert; victim total now 13
15 hours ago

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say bones from 13 victims have been recovered from a desert site west of Albuquerque that authorities have been excavating for about a month.

The death toll had been 11, but police said that further examination of the remains Thursday showed that they must have belonged to 12 victims. Police recovered a 13th body Friday.

The bones have all been dug up from an area recently razed for a housing development. A hiker made the first grisly find.

Only two sets of remains have been identified.

Authorities say 22-year-old Michelle Valdez and 28-year-old Victoria Chavez of Albuquerque both suffered drug addiction and worked as prostitutes when they were reported missing in 2004.

Police say they suspect the remains were buried by one person.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jHoyOxB-E50OhIqc4aIyyfP0WNKQD96K80N81


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 01, 2009, 10:11:42 AM
Girl remembers mother found buried on West Mesa

http://www.topix.net/forum/source/kob-new-mexico/TMUUQ4TFQLUFV60V5


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 02, 2009, 05:13:31 PM
Cold cases reopened after bodies found in desert

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — In the desert outside Albuquerque, hikers have sometimes stumbled upon human remains partially buried under the hardy scrub and hard-baked dirt.

But few people could have imagined the crime scene now emerging: The bones of at least 13 people have been uncovered on the site of an abandoned housing development.

The grisly discovery last month caused authorities to reopen dozens of cold cases involving missing prostitutes, some of whom vanished as much as 20 years ago.

Since the bones came to light, forensic experts, detectives, anthropologists and medical investigators have raked tediously through mounds of dirt for the next sliver of bone or clump of human hair.

Police believe one person or group of people is responsible for the slayings, but they have been reluctant to make comparisons to any existing serial murder cases.

"We don't want to limit our investigation," Police Chief Ray Schultz said, calling the scene "one of the largest and most complex" ever investigated by his department.

So far, only two sets of remains have been identified. But detectives are reviewing cases involving dozens of women who vanished from the city over the last two decades. All of them were suspected of being drug addicts and prostitutes. Of particular interest are 16 women reported missing between 2001 and 2006.

The two bodies identified so far were Michelle Valdez and Victoria Chavez, both women who disappeared within months of each other in 2004.

Chavez was about 28 when she vanished, leaving behind a daughter. Valdez was 22, with two children and another on the way.

Valdez's mother, Karen Jackson of Myrtle Beach, S.C., said her daughter struggled with addiction and worked as a prostitute during periods when she would disappear without any explanation. But she would always resurface to get a hug or money from her father, share a laugh with her sister or call her mom.

Valdez's body and that of her fetus were unearthed Feb. 23. No cause of death has been determined.

Jackson said she was devastated to learn her daughter's fate after years of silence and searching.

"I wanted closure, but not this," she said. "My heart goes out to the rest of the families of the missing women."

The family of Leah Peebles, who is on the list of 16 missing women, is devastated by the discovery but holding out hope.

"I don't think she's out there. I really don't," Peebles' mother, Sharon Peebles, said from her home in Fort Worth, Texas. "I have fear and start worrying ... but until I hear otherwise, I feel she is alive."

Still, after two other women on the list were found in the desert, it's getting harder for Peebles and her husband to keep the faith.

"I want some conclusion, but I don't want that," she said.

Leah Peebles, 24, moved to Albuquerque just months prior to her disappearance. She was trying to start a new life free of drugs and the history of sexual molestation and assault that haunted her in her hometown. Her parents reported her missing in May 2006.

The first remains were discovered Feb. 2, when a woman walking her dog found a human rib bone on the site of a subdivision under construction.

The area had been abandoned when homebuilder KB Home ended its operations in New Mexico, leaving a cinderblock wall surrounding mounds of dirt, a drainage pond and a few retaining walls.

Before construction crews left the site in early 2008, many of the bones were damaged by earth-moving equipment that scattered the remains across 100 acres surrounding the concentrated burial site.

The tedious police work at the site has been creeping along seven days a week, drawing curious spectators from nearby neighborhoods.

Schultz said a task force of 40 detectives is checking leads and reviewing missing-persons reports.

"Everyone has taken a personal stake in this," he said. "We don't think anybody is a throwaway person."
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jEQrHFS2Rc_0uKM8CVFtO8JNKRiQD96M4IKG0


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 03, 2009, 07:15:17 AM
FBI profiler joining mesa graves case

Perez family still seeking closure

Updated: Monday, 02 Mar 2009, 11:31 PM MST
Published : Monday, 02 Mar 2009, 11:29 PM MST

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Agents from an elite FBI unit are about to get involved in the investigation that so far has unearthed 13 sets of skeletal remains in a once-remote area of Albuquerque's west mesa.

In the last month Albuquerque police have found the remains of 12 adults and an unborn fetus buried in an area now being developed for a subdivision. Two have been identified as young Albuquerque women last seen in 2004.

No causes of death have been reported, and police have been reluctant to refer to a serial killer other than to say one is not on the loose in the city today.

The FBI has joined the investigation into to who may have dumped the bodies in the sandy graves and believes the people were murdered likely by a serial killer.

This week, someone from the FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit in Quantico, Va. will either come to Albuquerque to look at the details of the case or the files will be sent out to the profiler in Virginia.

"Our experts have the advantage of being able to study every serial killer in the country and find out the common themes that these guys have," FBI Special Agency Steve Marshal told KRQE News 13. "It's not an exact science.

"Occasionally they're completely off on what a profile is, but it gives us a place to start."

The profiler will look at all the similarities of the deaths. The two women identified so far both had histories of drug abuse and prostitution.

"How these women were chosen as victims is going to be very important," Marshal said. "How they were killed is going to be very important; where they were found is going to be very important."

Albuquerque investigators compiled a list of at least two dozen women, many involved in prostitution, who disappeared at from about 2000 to 2005. They have not speculated in public about what may have happened but have mentioned one man shot to death after killing a prostitute and a known pimp found to have pictures of some of the missing women after he died of natural causes.

Meanwhile the uncertainty and the massive media coverage of the case have been tough on the families of the known victims and on the families of other missing women.

"It's been a really hard day," Liz Perez of Albuquerque told News 13. "Today my grandson came home from school and saw the newspaper on top of the table and started asking me a lot of questions."

Questions like why is a picture of his mother on the front page of the Albuquerque Journal in an article about missing women and the dig for more bodies on the west mesa?

"I don't have the answers," Perez said.

The unanswered question is what happened to Darlene Trujillo who left her son with his grandmother in 2001?

It left a hole in his heart "'cause my mom's not here," Chris Perez said.

For Perez, 11, the digging on the other side of town unearths memories. When he was a toddler his mother went to Arizona with a boyfriend and never returned.

Her family held vigils trying to raise money for a private investigator to look into her disappearance and still hope she's not among the women unearthed from the mesa.

"I don't feel that Darlene is one of those women is up there because she left with a guy from Mexico," Perez said. "Darlene was not what they're saying these other girls were.

"I just hope we find closure" Trujillo continued. "I want my grandson to know what happened to his mom, where she's at."

The family believes Trujillo is being held against her will in Mexico and blames Albuquerque police for not doing enough to find her.

For their part investigators said they did look into the disappearance and listed her as a missing person. However hundreds of adults are reported missing in Albuquerque every year.

Many simply run away and the cases go cold.
http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_fbi_profiler_joining_mesa_graves_case_20090302

Darlene Trujillo's picture was on the front page of the Albuquerque Journal Monday.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 03, 2009, 07:26:47 AM
Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico)
 
March 2, 2009 Monday 
 
LOST WOMEN;
Don't These Cases Deserve a Deeper Look?
 
A friend of mine whose husband works for a local TV news station told me last week that, when the identity of a second woman unearthed from the mass grave on the Southwest Mesa was released, he, like every other reporter, tried to lock down the requisite interview with the woman's grieving family.

The relatives said no.

They were angry, my friend said, because they had never forgotten that, four years before, the TV station had refused their plea for a little airtime to help them find the missing woman.

I don't know the reason for the station's dismissive stance then, but I can guess. Gina Michelle Valdez, 22, wasn't big news to them. She wasn't a blond-haired, blue-eyed, all-American college student inexplicably snatched from the nice part of town. No, Valdez lived - and, likely, died - on the dark, desperate fringes where death comes more easily, less lamentably. In her brief adulthood, she had amassed several charges both here and in Arizona for drug possession and prostitution. Her last arrest, on the Fourth of July 2004, was for a charge of aggravated assault. No one cared, some editor must have
wagered, whether she ever showed up again. Except for those who loved her, who knew she was more than her rap sheet, more than someone who had fallen too far, too fast. She had mattered to them even before she became Jane Doe No. 8, a dead pregnant woman and one of 13 bodies and counting, buried in what has become the biggest crime scene in Albuquerque's history, the repository for an apparent prolific serial killer's handiwork and a gruesome sound bite for CNN, ABC, Fox News and other national media. (By the way, just how many bodies need to be dug up before the Albuquerque Police Department is comfortable with the term "serial killer"? Just asking.)  
The TV station certainly isn't alone in its easy dismissal of society's less-thans. During my days as a cop reporter at the Albuquerque Tribune, I remember being admonished by an editor to remember that crime was only news if she could imagine it happening in her own backyard. Of course, her backyard was situated in a swanky, saltillo-tiled enclave outside Santa Fe. Short of tax evasion or insider trading schemes, that didn't leave a whole lot for me to cover. So, as was typical of me (then), I ignored her. It always seemed to me that we journalists owe it to the public not to make such swift and elitist judgments for fear we might miss a truly compelling story about a truly remarkable person. Granted that's typically not the case for a majority of those whose lives end in violence. Still, you can't help but wonder whether the body count on the Southwest Mesa might not have gone so high had someone besides the families of the lost taken a second look. At least one woman had, though. For several years, Detective Ida Lopez of the Albuquerque Police Department's missing persons unit has been collecting the names and faces of women who disappeared into the rough world of prostitution, drugs and violence, then disappeared altogether.

Gina Michelle Valdez and Victoria Chavez, the first women to be identified from among the remains on the mesa, were both on that list.

I've included a list of the others, all gone since 2001. And I added a few more, including Teresa Reyes, a 17-year-old bipolar Albuquerque girl last seen in her family's Southeast Heights home in 1998. She's another one of those missing persons whose case gathers dust but no leads. Go ahead. Google their names. You won't find much except family generated blogs and Web sites maintained by various missing persons organizations, such as the Charley Project and the North American Missing Persons Network.

They're out there somewhere, and maybe they are out there on that mesa. Either way, maybe it's time to take a second look. 
http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=574&topicId=100020825&docId=l:934366111&start=16

CHAVEZ: First body to be identified
VALDEZ: Was pregnant when she died
DARLENE MARIA TRUJILLO (2001)
SONIA BERNADETTE LENTE (2002)
MONICA DIANA CANDELARIA (2003)
JAMIE BARELA (2004)
CINNAMON ELKS (2004)
LEAH RACHELLE PEEBLES (2006)
VIRGINIA ANN CLOVEN (2004)
DOREEN MARQUEZ (2004)
JULIE CYNDIE NIETO (2004)
ANSELMA GUERRA (2004)
EVELYN JESUSMARIA SALAZAR (2004)
ANNA VIGIL (2005)
SHAWNTELL WAITES (2005)
NINA HERRON (2005)
FELIPA GONZALES (2005)
TERESA REYES (1998) VERONICA ROMERO (2004, not pictured) SOURCES: Albuquerque Police Department, The Charley Project, North American Missing Persons Project


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 03, 2009, 09:22:16 PM
Missing Woman May Be Among West Mesa Victims
Family Says Woman's Lifestyle An Issue

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Doreen Marquez was 27 years old when her family and friends put up posters all over the area.

Those who knew Marquez the best said the mother of two got wrapped up in a dangerous life of drugs and prostitution when she disappeared. When they went to report Marquez missing years ago they said they got a disappointing reaction from detectives.

"They said because of her lifestyle they said women who end up like this aren't missing, they don't want to be found," said Erika Smith, a family spokeswoman.

But Smith said she knew her life-long friend Marquez loved her two children too much to just disappear, so she and Marquez's cousin, Regina, stepped up the search.

"She would call everywhere she could and try to do as much investigating as she could without the police's help because they -- it just didn't seem like they cared," said Smith.

Albuquerque Police Department said it does care and that when a person is officially reported missing each case is investigated and information is gathered and put into a local and federal data base along with a note stating the person is reported to have a "high risk" life style.

Police said the lifestyle doesn't make the case more or less important than any other missing person investigation.

In the past few weeks, Smith said Marquez's family has had more conversations with detectives now that the grave site has surfaced, but she said loved ones have found little comfort in the system.

"If all these people were calling, saying that there family, sisters, friends were missing why couldn't they linked them together and say is this a coincidence that all these women of the same nature are missing at the same time. Common sense would've told them that," Smith said.
http://www.koat.com/news/18840006/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 03, 2009, 09:43:38 PM
Missing Woman's Family Fears She Could Be Among West Mesa Victims

The search for remains in the West Mesa is an agonizing wait for some families with missing loved ones.

One said it worries the bones will reveal the worst fear.

Veronica Romero's family said she was last seen at Wyoming Blvd. and Central Ave. nearly five years ago.
It is with mixed emotion that they watch as police continue to recover bones at 118th Street and Dennis Chavez.

"We're hoping of course that she's not out here," Desiree Gonzalez said at the site. "But in a sense, the closure. We've been waiting five years."

Looking over the search site, Gonzales wondered if her cousin is among the bones found.
She said that witnesses in 2004 claim Romero got into a white pickup truck late one night and never checked back in with family.

"Just an outgoing normal girl who got caught up in a dangerous lifestyle that could happen to the best of us," she said of her cousin.

Since then, her family has circulated posters, but Romero has not been found.

The site in the West Mesa worries them.

Gonzales said she grew up knowing the two identified victims: Victoria Chavez and Michelle Valdez.

She said her cousin wound up in a similar dangerous lifestyle.

"They got caught up in that lifestyle," she said. "But they're still human beings, you know. Somebody's mother, somebody's sister, somebody's daughter."

A memorial now stands just outside the search area for women Gonzales said are never far from her mind.

"Every Christmas we wonder 'Were they cold and alone?' And it's hard," she said.

It's something Gonzales hopes she won't have to add to to honor Romero.

"Despite the way she lived, she was a human being," she said. "Some people just fall that way. It's the sad part of it. It's what could happen."

Romero's mother was also out at the site Saturday.

She said the waiting is excruciating and she's still holding out hope her only daughter will come home.

Police said they have a list of women who all disappeared within a certain amount of time under similar circumstances but are not releasing the names on that list.
http://www.koat.com/news/18820598/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 04, 2009, 05:19:21 PM
Bone Search Concerns Missing Woman's Mom

Remains Of 13 Bodies Unearthed On West Mesa

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- More families of missing women are coming forward and searching for answers as police search for more bones on the West Mesa.

Crews have unearthed the remains of 13 people over the past month, but they've only identified three victims.

Police said they're hoping a new tip line will help them ID the remaining 10 victims. Officers will start taking calls at 1-877-SOLV-APD or 1-877-765-8273 beginning Wednesday morning.

Bone fragments were found on the West Mesa Tuesday. Police said they are trying to link those bone fragments to specific victims.

In the meantime, so many families of missing women said they are in agony and wonder if their loved ones wound up among the buried bodies.

That was the case for Cinnamon Elk's family.

Elk's mother Diana, who didn't want to give her last name, said "This is a nightmare."

Diana said her daughter, Cinnamon, was a perfect child.

"That's how I remember her," Diana said. "That's what I want."

But in her teenage years, she took the wrong path.

"My daughter probably has a rap sheet as long as her arm," Diana said.

She fell into a life of drugs and crime and missed out on raising her own two children.

"This is not what I brought up my daughter to be," Diana said.

Then, the summer of 2004 came.

"She did not call me for my birthday. She always called," Diana said.

Weeks turned to months with no word. In December 2004, Elk's mother filed a police report.

One of the only significant developments she said she received several calls from people she did not know and they left her with a chilling message about her daughter.

"That it was for sure that she was dead," Diana said. "I don't want to go into the gruesome details."

Now Diana said she is focused on the crime scene where police have unearthed 13 bodies.

"Every time they find a body you think, 'Oh dear, is this it?'" Diana said.

The police chief said they are looking at women who may have lived high-risk lifestyles and Elk went missing in the time frame investigators are focusing on.

It's enough to give this mother hope that she'll finally find some answers.

"I would like to have my daughter's body back, what's left," Diana said.

Medical investigators are working to identify remains, but said it is difficult because the bones are old and many of the missing women do not have dental records.

The FBI is helping APD with the case.

The FBI has a team that specializes in serial killers and they are already working on this case to see if findings fit the profile of a serial killer. They are also comparing the West Mesa crime scene to see if it connects to any other cases nationwide.
http://www.koat.com/news/18849640/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on March 05, 2009, 12:12:10 PM
I wonder if this is connected? Belen is 34 miles south of Albuquerque

2 Bodies Unearthed Near Belen

Investigators Search Area Off Highway 548


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Two bodies on the West Mesa near Belen were unearthed by Valencia County deputies, they said.

Sky 7 captured investigators searching through the area off Highway 548 Wednesday afternoon.

Crews said they first found a skull, then more bones and late Wednesday night they discovered a second partial skeleton.


Deputies said they don't know how long the remains may have been buried there or whether they could be related to any ongoing criminal cases.

They said they will continue digging for more bones Thursday.

http://www.koat.com/news/18858904/detail.html


I wonder if one of the deceased suspects owned property in Belen, NM?



Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on March 05, 2009, 12:24:48 PM
The 2 deceased named suspects were Fred Reynolds and Lorenzo Montoya

N.M. Police Find Bones Of 6 Bodies

Possible Victims Include Prostitutes Who Went Missing From Albuquerque; Two Suspects Are Dead

(AP)  Bones from six bodies have been uncovered in the desert west of Albuquerque during the past two weeks, and police said Tuesday they were likely put there by one person.

As detectives shore up their list of suspects, the list of possible victims is growing to include a group of 16 prostitutes who went missing from Albuquerque between 2001 and 2006 and others reported missing to other area law enforcement agencies.

Of the six sets of remains, only one has been identified through dental records provided by the family of Victoria Chavez when they reported her missing in 2004. Police said her remains were found intact in a grave 18 inches deep without clothing or any other items.

Bones from the other five bodies, the most recent of them recovered Tuesday, were scattered across a 100-square-foot area recently leveled by bulldozers building a housing community. Police were alerted to the site by hikers who spotted some bones two weeks ago.

Albuquerque homicide Sgt. Carlos Argueta said some of the victims were likely transient drug addicts and prostitutes - women who often don't have family members who report them missing.

Argueta said his detectives are looking at a few suspects in connection with Chavez's case. Two suspects - Fred Reynolds and Lorenzo Montoya - are dead.

Reynolds, 60, was an Albuquerque area pimp who was found dead of natural causes in January. Police say he had pictures of some of the missing prostitutes in his home.

Montoya, 39, was shot and killed in 2006 after he killed a 19-year-old prostitute, Sherika Hill, and tried to stuff her nude body in the trunk of his car. Her pimp, parked outside his trailer waiting for Hill, shot Montoya.

Even if the victims are identified, Argueta said, determining the cause of death from skeletal remains can be difficult.

“But we have to investigate these cases for these women and for their families. This was someone's daughter,” he said.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/02/18/national/main4809352.shtml?source=RSSattr=U.S._4809352



Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on March 05, 2009, 10:08:46 PM
Interesting (I think everything so far points to Lorenzo Montoya)

Police Hope Albuquerque Serial Killer is Dead

Police say residents who live near Albuquerque’s west mesa where the bodies of several area women have been unearthed can rest easy. They believe the man responsible for dumping the women in this mass of graves is most likely dead. Two of the suspects police are looking at are already dead. One of the men was the victim of a homicide. The other man died of natural causes.

In 2006, according to the Albuquerque Tribune, 39-year-old Lorenzo Montoya had met a woman through a telephone chat line. Montoya agreed to meet 19-year-old Sherika Hill at his trailer, which sat off of Blake Drive. Upon arrival at the trailer, Montoya left to obtain some money. Hill called her boyfriend, 18-year-old Fred Williams, to the scene for protection. (Williams was the kind of boyfriend who hired out his girlfriends for sex.) Williams stayed out of site, unaware of what transpired between Montoya and Hill. Montoya binds Hill up with duct tape and strangles her to death. He then tries to put her nude body inside of a neighbors vehicle. When Williams becomes concerned and sees that something is awry, he eventually confronts Montoya –shooting him to death. Upon investigating the incident, police began to suspect Montoya of being involved in the cases of some missing area women. Montoya had previously been arrested on two separate occasions for patronizing a prostitute. He was charged with kidnapping and two counts of rape in 1999. Those charges had been dropped.

Lou Fred Reynolds was well-known for procuring prostitutes in the area. Reynolds operated an escort service called "Have Mercy Escorts." He even arranged dates and hired prostitutes through his Internet website. When he passed away on January 2, of this year, police found some intriguing items in his house. Reynolds had photos of several missing prostitutes. One of the photos had the word "missing" written on it. Of course, this could be explained simply by his being a hustler –a vocation where one encounters plenty of prostitutes and those who use them. Reynolds was arrested in June of 2001 for promoting prostitution after telling an undercover officer that one of his escorts would have have sex with him. Many of the women displayed on his website had been arrested for prostitution at one time or another. Reynolds was interviewed in December, shortly before his death, concerning the disappearance of one of his prostitutes.

As of yet, police have not determined the cause of death of any of the women’s remains that have been discovered. Only two of the bodies have been identified, along with the unborn fetus of one of them. Police are not releasing many details about what is being unearthed, in the hopes of maintaining an investigative advantage.

The perpetrator is still unknown at this time. The good news is, whoever did this doesn’t seem to be active anymore. No recently buried (fresh) bodies have been recovered from this location. This could mean the killer has stopped. It could mean he is using a different disposal area. It could mean he’s incarcerated. Police are hoping that it means he is dead. At this time, they have very good reason to think so.

http://crimeshadowsnews.com/main/2009/03/02/police-hope-albuquerque-serial-killer-is-dead/


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on March 05, 2009, 10:21:39 PM
Another reason Montoya is getting attention is how close he lived to
the dig site--about two miles.

Back in 2006, there were dirt trails that led directly from Montoya's
mobile home park to the dig site.

http://groups.google.com/group/alt.true-crime/msg/ff5e927625f5be9f


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 09, 2009, 10:08:23 AM
Mom thinks mesa bones
may be her child
Updated: Sunday, 08 Mar 2009, 11:18 PM MDT

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - A mother from Canada emailed Albuquerque police last month to let them know her daughter, Jessica Foster, has been missing, and she thinks she may buried be in the West Mesa.

Since the first set of remains was found on the mesa, Glendene Grant has digested every news article about New Mexico's bones.

When the count reached six, she became concerned. When detectives said Jane Doe number eight disappeared in 2006—the Canadian mom hopped online and brought cries from Canada to Albuquerque.

"I just googled it, Albuquerque, New Mexico, I pulled up the police department I emailed the sheriff. The one I saw on TV," Grant said.

She told detectives about her daughter, Jessica.

"I told them that I had read a report that one of the women that they had found had been reported missing in 2006, and my daughter had also been reported missing in 2006," Grant said.

However, an Albuquerque detective emailed her that it wasn't her daughter. Dental records identified the woman as Michelle Valdez, 24, an Albuquerque native.

So far the remains of 13 people have been found, and two sets are confirmed to have come from women with a history of prostitution. It was a lifestyle similar to that of Grant's daughter before she disappeared.

Jessica Foster was last seen in Las Vegas, Nev., living with her pimp boyfriend.

"Just because that one person is not Jessie that doesn't mean that some of the other ones aren't her," Grant said.

So far only two have been positively identified. Grant said she will not stop calling until there is no chance her daughter is buried in the New Mexico desert.

"Until they have every single solitary piece of remains identified and every DNA match Identified to somebody Jessie's face is still going to be hovering around Albuquerque," Grant said.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_canadian_mom_searching_for_daughter_in_west_mesa_200903082056


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 09, 2009, 10:26:38 AM
I wonder if this is connected? Belen is 34 miles south of Albuquerque

2 Bodies Unearthed Near Belen

Investigators Search Area Off Highway 548

...snipped
http://www.koat.com/news/18858904/detail.html


I wonder if one of the deceased suspects owned property in Belen, NM?


They do not appear to be connected>>>>
BELEN, N.M. -- The state Office of the Medical Investigator has determined that two sets of human remains discovered near the Rio Puerco earlier this week are too old to be recent.

The remains were uncovered Wednesday by a man searching for arrowheads who reported he'd found a partially buried human skull. Valencia County officials later discovered a second set of remains and contacted medical investigators.

While officials said they have not determined precisely how old the remains are, investigators believe the man may have uncovered an ancient burial ground, possibly of Navajo or Laguna ancestry.

Archeologists will try to further identify the remains, which have been reburied and flagged.
http://www.koat.com/news/18869366/detail.html

I read somewhere that the bones could be 600 years old...I can't find that link now, sorry.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on March 09, 2009, 01:23:26 PM
Thanks Nut


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 09, 2009, 03:39:00 PM
YW
Here is the story...... 300 yrs old >>
Skulls found on West Mesa may be up to 300 years old
http://www.news-bulletin.com/news/87275-03-07-09.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 10, 2009, 01:22:26 AM
Family Worries Daughter Is Among West Mesa Victims

Investigators are still working to identify the human remains found on the West Mesa.

The search has left families wondering if they will be the next to find out their loved one was buried in what's now considered Albuquerque's largest crime scene.

Elizabeth Cloven, the mother of a missing woman said, "I miss her dearly."

The tattered family photo, the school shot and the happy Halloweens, for this mother the pictures are painful to look at.

"She was my baby," she said.

She hasn't heard from her daughter Virginia Cloven in years.

Robert Cloven, her father, said, "Where did she go?"

It is not the first loss for Robert and Elizabeth Cloven.

The Los Chavez couple said their eldest, Robert Cloven, Jr., was killed in the late 1990s.

It's a tragedy that tore their family apart.

Robert Cloven said, "Virginia couldn't stand to live in the same house anymore, so she moved out to Albuquerque."

Out on her own, she moved around, stayed with friends, and eventually fell into a life of crime, according to the family.

The regular phone calls home completely stopped in October 2004.

"Then we hear about the murders here on the mesa and we begin to wonder if maybe our daughter is one of the victims," Robert Cloven said.

"Since I heard the first story I have had trouble sleeping at night," Elizabeth Cloven said. "Every time I close my eyes I see her or I see the West Mesa and I don't want to believe she is there either."

Virginia was reported missing around the same time many women, who were living what police describe as high-risk lifestyles, seemed to disappear.

Those missing persons reports are now being considered as investigators try to identify the remains found on the West Mesa.

Robert Cloven said, "We are doing the best we can. I'd just like to hear she is alive that's all I want in life."

It may take a long time to get answers because the remains being analyzed appear to be several years old.

What would be helpful is comparing dental records, but for Virginia Cloven and many of the other missing women, they don't have dental records on file.

Albuquerque police activated a tip line hoping to generate information about the remains found buried on the West Mesa.

Detectives are manning the phone lines 24 hours a day and seven days a week.

They're asking the public to call 1-877-765-8273 with information.

http://www.koat.com/news/18880331/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (2 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 11, 2009, 12:53:33 PM
3RD POSITIVE ID 4th pending......

Police ID Woman Found On West Mesa
Missing Woman's Mom Speaks Out

POSTED: 10:39 pm MDT March 10, 2009
UPDATED: 12:49 am MDT March 11, 2009
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Diana Wilhelm said after not hearing from her daughter in more than four years, she suspected foul play and she said police confirmed it Tuesday.

"Every time they find a body, even in Las Cruces, you think, 'Oh dear, is this it?" ,'" Wilhelm said.

Those were Wilhelm's words a week ago, and Tuesday night, the mother of a missing daughter received the news she's been dreading.

Wilhelm said by phone that detectives showed up at her door and told her dental records confirmed a set of remains found on the West Mesa are those of Cinnamon Elks.

"I would like to have my daughter's body back, what's left," Wilhelm said.

On March 3, Wilhelm said she's spent plenty of time over the last four years wondering.

She said she's kept a notepad close to the phone in case police or a tipster calls. She also spoke candidly about when her daughter lost her way.

"This is not what I brought up my daughter to be," Wilhelm said. "But drugs stole everything from us."

Pictures showed how much Cinnamon Elks changed. She was a mother of two addicted to drugs.

"They start stealing your checks, forging them for money -- and from there I don't know if it is shame. Then, they quit coming home at all," Wilhelm said.

During the interview, Wilhelm said, in the past, her daughter would go away for long lengths of time, but she'd always come back. She'd always call until the summer of 2004.

"She missed out on so much," Wilhelm said.

She missed her son's basketball games, her brothers' weddings and left her family with a mystery.

Now Elks' loved ones are finally getting answers, but it's the ending they hoped they wouldn't have to face.

APD has refused to confirm to Action 7 News that Elks has been named as one of the victims. They have only officially identified two women so far.

The first was Victoria Chavez, whose body was the first discovered at the dig site in February.

The other was Michelle Valdez who was pregnant when she was killed and buried.

We've heard from a relative of another missing woman Tuesday night about their loved one also being identified as a victim. But, we're waiting for more information before we release that name.
http://www.koat.com/news/18903738/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (3 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 11, 2009, 06:24:33 PM
Police Make Fifth ID In West Mesa Case

POSTED: 2:00 pm MDT March 11, 2009
UPDATED: 2:18 pm MDT March 11, 2009

Juliean Nieto 5th ID / no info on her yet.....

http://www.koat.com/news/18908758/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count now at 10 / New Mexico
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 11, 2009, 06:48:42 PM
These some of the known missing women, let their names not be forgotten.
Darlene Trujillo missing since 2001
Sonia Lente missing since 2002
Monica Candalaria missing since 2003
Jamie Barela missing since 2004
Cinnamon Elks missing since 2004 /BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18903678_240X180.jpg)
Veronica Romero missing since 2004
Victoria Chavez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://helpfindthemissing.org/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=851&stc=1&thumb=1&d=1234301967)
Michelle Gina Valdez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND w/Fetus
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v63/Maverick1862/murder%20victims/GinaMichelleValdez.jpg)
Virginia Cloven missing since 2004
Doreen Marquez missing since 2004
Julie Nieto missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18908539_240X180.jpg)
Evelyn Salazar missing since 2004
Anselma Guerra missing since 2004
Anna Vigil missing since 2005
Felipa Gonzales missing since 2005
Nina Herron missing since 2005
Shawntell Waltes missing since 2006
Leah Peebles missing since 2006

http://www.topix.com/forum/source/kob-new-mexico/TV7FGN5QNJ4GK78A8

NUT's EDIT>
I'll bump this up to each page and add photos as each body is identified....
I need to say something about Leah Peebles. I will be very surprised if she is in the mix here. I have done a lot of research/extensive searches for her. I do believe she is dead, just not buried in the MESA. Time perhaps, will tell.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 12, 2009, 02:43:50 PM
Police Identify Two More Female Bodies in New Mexico Desert Mass Grave

March 12, 2009

Albuquerque (ChattahBox)—New Mexico Police Chief Ray Schultz, reported on Wednesday, of two more identified bodies, bringing the total to four identified victims so far, from a mass grave discovered in the desert. The new victims are identified as Cinnamon Elks, 31, and Julie Nieto, 23, two local Albuquerque women that went missing in 2004. Both women had a history of prostitution and drug abuse. Two other recently identified victims; Michelle Valdez and Victoria Chavez were also known prostitutes. Valdez was pregnant with her third child when she disappeared. Her unborn fetus will be counted among the victims.


Police believe there are at least 14 remaining bodies to be identified in this mass desert grave, discovered in Feb. 2 when a hiker spotted a human bone. The area was recently excavated to make way for a new housing development. New Mexico police soon made the grim discovery of over, a dozen female bodies haphazardly buried together in a desolate area.


Many women were reported missing in the Albuquerque area from 2001 to 2006, raising fears of a serial killer on the loose. Most of the missing women were transients. Medical investigators and forensic specialists are using dental and medical records to identify the victims. New Mexico police continue to scour the grave with rakes to ensure they recover all of the remains. Investigators hope to identify all of the victims so that the families can receive some closure, after all these years of wondering about the fate of their loved ones.


The Police set up a national hot line to help catch the killer. They don’t know for sure if these murders are the work of just one or multiple killers. While no suspects have been officially named, police believe the killings may be the work of two unsavory local men, now deceased. A pimp killed one suspect in 2006, when he was in the act of stuffing a body of a dead woman in his trunk. The other suspect, a known pimp, died of natural causes just recently, in 2009. Police found photos of the missing women in his home
http://chattahbox.com/us/2009/03/12/police-identify-two-more-female-bodies-in-new-mexico-desert-mass-grave/


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on March 12, 2009, 09:28:27 PM
Co-workers suspect man in Mesa body mystery
03/12/2009 7:02 PM


He was killed after strangling a prostitute to death. Now, the man's co-workers say they think he was behind the bodies buried on the West Mesa.

Lorenzo Montoya lived 1.7 miles away from the dig site where 13 bodies have been found in southwest Albuquerque.

Co-workers said the man had a hatred for women and even joked about burying them on the mesa.

As crews continue to look for more bodies on the mesa, the question of who put them there still remains.

APD Chief Ray Schultz said the bodies were likely buried between 2001 and 2006. Ever since Montoya died in 2006, the number of missing prostitutes in Albuquerque has dropped dramatically.

In 2006, Montoya tied up and murdered a 19-year-old prostitute in his mobile home. The woman's boyfriend confronted Montoya at the mobile home and shot him to death. The man soon after found his girlfriend dead inside.

Ann Farmer, who worked with Montoya at Sunrise Printing, says Montoya acted "very meticulous" and "macho."

Farmer said she often worked in close quarters with the man.

"It was scary because I used to work with him and I went places with him just in the van we had to do deliveries and I was alone with him," she said.

In 1999, police said they caught Montoya raping and choking a prostitute in his truck after he picked her up on Central Avenue.

In the police report, the prostitute said Montoya choked her so hard "she couldn't breathe and thought the man was going to kill her."

When Montoya's co-workers found out about the prostitutes found buried on the West Mesa, one thing came to mind.

"When we heard about what happened the first thing everyone said was, I bet you anything it was Lorenzo," Farmer said.

Other co-workers said Montoya was a loner who often ate his lunch in the bathroom and talked about his hatred of women.

Farmer said other people who knew Montoya heard him say strange things like "he'd just as soon take them out to the mesa and bury them."

Police aren't calling Montoya a suspect, but they have looked into past cases involving him.

http://www.kob.com/article/stories/S829737.shtml


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 17, 2009, 02:28:53 PM
Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico)
 
March 17, 2009 Tuesday 
 
Memorial on the Mesa
 
The search won't be over, police say, until nothing more is found. And, so far, only four of the 13 victims found in the windswept land of the far Southwest Mesa have names: Victoria Chavez, Julie Nieto, Cinnamon Elks and Gina Michelle Valdez.

A Senate memorial notes that the women have been "depicted" as criminals because of their arrests for prostitution and histories of drug use.

"The deceased and missing women of New Mexico deserve diligence and respect under the law and in our public discourse," Senate Memorial 85 says, "while their families deserve the right to carry their memories with dignity."

The women disappeared between 2000 and 2006.

"We will love you always," says a sign at the site. "We will miss you." 
 
Flowers, religious icons and crosses, photographs and messages placed outside a walled 100-acre site near 118th and Dennis Chavez SW honor the 13 victims whose bones have been found since investigators began searching last month.
 
http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=574&topicId=100020825&docId=l:941844543&start=2


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 17, 2009, 08:42:05 PM
Missing Woman's Family Expects Bad News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- A family is preparing for the worst. Their loved on has been missing for almost three years and they think she might be among the west mesa victims.

Vanessa Reid Lujan was a 25-year-old mother when she disappeared. Her family said she was trying to turn her life around, but fell back into a drug addiction.

She also ran in the same circles as some of the identified west mesa victims.

Medical investigators are looking for Lujan's dental records.

Her family is sure something bad happened.

"I just can't believe she's not here anymore, and my babies they are never going to know her," said her sister Amy.

Vanessa's sister said she too was once a drug user and she knew two of the identified victims. She said over a period of time, she noticed several women went missing after last being seen in the area of Central Avenue and Wyoming Boulevard.

http://www.koat.com/news/18946463/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 17, 2009, 08:45:15 PM
Missing Woman's Family Expects Bad News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- A family is preparing for the worst. Their loved on has been missing for almost three years and they think she might be among the west mesa victims.

Vanessa Reid Lujan was a 25-year-old mother when she disappeared. Her family said she was trying to turn her life around, but fell back into a drug addiction.

She also ran in the same circles as some of the identified west mesa victims.

Medical investigators are looking for Lujan's dental records.

Her family is sure something bad happened.

"I just can't believe she's not here anymore, and my babies they are never going to know her," said her sister Amy.

Vanessa's sister said she too was once a drug user and she knew two of the identified victims. She said over a period of time, she noticed several women went missing after last being seen in the area of Central Avenue and Wyoming Boulevard.

http://www.koat.com/news/18946463/detail.html

This gal is also not on the list of the 24 missing women.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 17, 2009, 08:56:41 PM
Missing person April Pitzer ruled out so far.



Bones bring queries on
lost loved ones
Californian's daughter missing five
years

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Word of the women's bones being unearthed on the west mesa reached Gloria Denton in California leading her back to Albuquerque and another dose of frustration in the search for her missing daughter.

“Everywhere there is a Jane Doe that Jane Doe could be my April,” said Denton told KRQE News 13.

Pitzer disappeared from California in 2004. According to the family a few months later someone used her name to set up a cell phone account in Albuquerque.

What is not known is whether that Pitzer herself or someone using her identity for their own benefit.

When Denton heard a dozen sets of skeletal remains, possibly all women, had been discovered on Albuquerque's west mesa she contacted the coroner handling Pitzer's. He immediately e-mailed the Office of Medical Investigator in Albuquerque about Pitzer and another missing woman named Catherine.

“I simply bundled a package together that has their identifier records and e-mailed that to the medical examiner section,” David Van Norman, an investigator with the San Bernardino County's coroner department, said.

Van Norman sent the dental X-rays of the women, and in less than a day, the Albuquerque OMI responded that the remains collected so far do not include either woman.

News 13 asked the office of OMI to talk about the findings in more detail on Friday. Medical investigator Peter Nine declined but said he will discuss it further with Denton.

Denton said she does not believe that her daughter is still alive so her search is for answers. As long as the search for bones continues on the mesa she will keep hoping for new of her daughter.

Meanwhile not all the remains recovered from the west mesa are complete. Investigators have said the dig could go on for months

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_bones_bring_queries_on_lost_loved_ones_200903161745


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on March 18, 2009, 11:17:44 PM
PI offers free help in bones mystery

Updated: Monday, 16 Mar 2009, 6:46 PM MDT


ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Albuquerque Police and the Office of the Medical Investigator are still working to identify eight of the 13 skeletons found buried on Albuquerque's West Mesa.

Now, a private investigator is offering free help to people who wonder if a missing member of their family might be one of the unknown eight.

The investigator said families can get answers by giving police what they need to make a positive identification, and he's going to help them do that.

"We saw all the bodies found, we have several missing persons cases of young ladies that age and our clients were calling us, saying could our loved ones be there," Dr. George Walker said.

Walker put an ad in the paper last week, offering help for free to any family who believes their missing friend or relative could be one of the bodies found in the mesa.

He's gotten 10 calls so far, five of which he believes have potential ties to the West Mesa crime scene.

"A lot of parents have DNA samples in their homes that they're not aware of," Walker said. "Old brushes belong to loved one though of no use, sitting in your house, but if they have hair follicles you can identify people through DNA."

Walker wants to help families gather that DNA to hand over to police. He said he'll also work to track down dental records—even if that means tracking a dentist who has moved out of state.

Walker said he felt he had to do something.

"You miss 100 percent of chances you don't take, so we want to be able to take that shot," he said.

Another good thing for concerned families is to gather photographs of the missing person wearing their favorite jewelry. Sometimes jewelry is found with the remains.

Walker said he will help as many families as he can.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_PI_offers_help_in_west_mesa_mystery_200903161800


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 23, 2009, 01:47:34 PM
Mom Fears Daughter May Be West Mesa Victim
Medical Investigators Try To Identify Remains

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Medical investigators want to know more about Anna Vigil, a woman who went missing years ago.

"There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of Anna and of course I pray for Anna," said Stacy Love Vigil.

Stacy Love Vigil is Anna Vigil's mother. She spoke to KOAT by phone from her home in Arkansas.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 23, 2009, 01:49:34 PM
Mom Fears Daughter May Be West Mesa Victim
Medical Investigators Try To Identify Remains

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Medical investigators want to know more about Anna Vigil, a woman who went missing years ago.

"There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of Anna and of course I pray for Anna," said Stacy Love Vigil.

Stacy Love Vigil is Anna Vigil's mother. She spoke to KOAT by phone from her home in Arkansas.

accidently hit post to soon

"She has a young son who will be seven next week and he hasn't seen his mommy in four years," Vigil said.

Anna's been missing since January 2005.

"What's going on right now it is almost like a nightmare coming true," Vigil said.

Vigil referred to the west mesa where remains of 13 bodies have been discovered since February. She said its let her wondering.

"Anna had admitted to me, confided in me that she was having some problems with heroin," Vigil said.

Her daughter's lifestyle was a dangerous one and police said that's something identified victims have had in common.

"It's hard and I am trying so hard and I am trying so hard to help the police with x-rays and dental records," Vigil said.

She said she's doing everything all she can to finally get some answers.

"I love her unconditionally and I just want to know where she is," Vigil said.

Anna's family said it hasn't been able to locate her dental records. Her name is on a short list investigators sent out to dentist, asking them to double check their files.

The identified victims include Victoria Chavez, Michelle Valdez -- who was pregnant -- Cinnamon Elks and Juliean Nieto.

Eight sets of remains still need to be identified.

http://www.koat.com/westmesa/18988138/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on March 23, 2009, 02:06:40 PM
Memorial held for West
Mesa victims

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The mystery on Albuquerque's West Mesa is uniting the families of missing women.

Some of the families were among the 13 people who were found buried in shallow graves. All of the families looked to the heavens Saturday, for hope.

It started with prayers.

"Victoria Chavez Father God, Cinnamon Elks Lord, Julie Nieto Father God, we lift them to you Father God. We thank you for the girls you that they found Lord God. We lift up these balloons to their memory Father God," Rose Ramirez from Christ is our Lord Church said.

Then, thousands of balloons were sent flying into the skies over Albuquerque.

Each a symbol of the four victim's who have been identified on the West Mesa near 118th street and Dennis Chavez and those missing women who are still nowhere to be found.

"We just want to let them not be forgotten all the women that are missing. Everyday it's that thought of where she is. Is she alright, is she alive," Liz Perez said.

She organized the tribute for her daughter, Darlene Trujillo, who went missing in 2001.

Now the families of missing women are uniting together, asking God for help.

Ambrose Saiz and Mary Saiz's daughter Victoria Chavez was the first victim to be identified on the West Mesa.

"We know she was a good girl, she was our daughter, she was a good mother you know anything a parent would want from a daughter, that's what we got from her," Saiz said.

Mary Saiz said she is praying for justice.

"But the Lord does say is vengeance is mine, and I pray that whoever did this to them gets what they deserve," she said.

Three more women followed Gina Michelle Valdez, Cinnamon Elks, and Julie Nieto.

"We share the same emotion and the same heartache, and we did love our children as much as any other parent would have," Nieto's mother Eleanor Griego said.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_albuquerque_west_mesa_mystery_families_missing_unite_balloon_tribute_200903211830


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (5 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on March 28, 2009, 01:11:05 PM
Mesa graves search nears end

Updated: Friday, 27 Mar 2009, 8:34 PM MDT
 
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The search for more bodies from makeshift graves on the southwest mesa is almost over, Albuquerque's police chief said Friday.

Chief Ray Schultz said he expects the search to end next week.

Starting early in February investigators recovered 13 sets of skeletal remains from a once-remote section of mesa now being developed as a residential subdivision.

Four have been identified as Cinnamon Elks, Julie Nieto, Victoria Chavez and Michelle Valdez and her unborn child. All four women disappeared in Albuquerque in 2004.

They are among a list of 16 women reported missing between 2001 and 2006.

It's been weeks since investigators have made any new discoveries, and they believe they've found all the evidence they can.

Police have ventured few theories about what happened to the women and who might be responsible.  However they note the women identified so far all had troubled pasts that included drugs and prostitution.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_mesa_graves_search_nears_end_200903272029


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (7 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on April 03, 2009, 03:23:05 PM
Two More West Mesa Remains Identified

UPDATED: 12:28 pm MDT April 3, 2009

Two more sets of remains from the West Mesa dig site have been identified, police said Friday.

Albuquerque police have discovered 12 sets of human remains on the west mesa in the past month. The first set of remains was discovered by two hikers in early February. Police have identified six women and an unborn child from the remains.

Albuquerque police said the remains are that of Veronica Romero, date of birth July 19 1976, and Monica Candelaria, date of birth June 20, 1981 .

Albuquerque police chief Ray Schultz said the Office of Medical Investigator identified the remains late Thursday.

Schultz also said OMI has reduced the number of remains from 13 to 12. He said weather and other conditions caused the confusion.

Schultz said the investigation is far from over, and will continue as long as it takes. He said so far, no suspects have been identified.

Log onto koat.com for updates and stay with Action 7 News for further details.
http://www.koat.com/news/19087802/detail.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count 13 / New Mexico (7 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on April 03, 2009, 03:54:24 PM
These some of the known missing women, let their names not be forgotten.
Darlene Trujillo missing since 2001
Sonia Lente missing since 2002/BODY FOUND 2004 on Isleta Pueblo ID'd 2009
(http://www.abqjournal.com/abqnews/images/sonja.jpg)
Monica Candalaria missing since 2003/BODY FOUND
(http://tbn3.google.com/images?q=tbn:dtaLDvsHcGp3tM:http://www.bernco.gov/upload/images/Monica-Candelaria.jpg)
Jamie Barela missing since 2004
Cinnamon Elks missing since 2004 /BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18903678_240X180.jpg)
Veronica Romero missing since 2004/BODY FOUND
(http://kob.com/kobtvimages/veronica_romero.jpg)
Victoria Chavez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://helpfindthemissing.org/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=851&stc=1&thumb=1&d=1234301967)
Michelle Gina Valdez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND w/Fetus
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v63/Maverick1862/murder%20victims/GinaMichelleValdez.jpg)
Virginia Cloven missing since 2004
Doreen Marquez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://c4.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/23/m_d332279168fb4246ac3f0478e730ca0f.jpg)
Julie Nieto missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18908539_240X180.jpg)
Evelyn Salazar missing since 2004
Anselma Guerra missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND but not on Mesa
http://tinyurl.com/ce8mv2

Anna Vigil missing since 2005
Felipa Gonzales missing since 2005
Nina Herron missing since 2005
Shawntell Waltes missing since 2006
Leah Peebles missing since 2006

http://www.topix.com/forum/source/kob-new-mexico/TV7FGN5QNJ4GK78A8
BUMP


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (7 ID'd)
Post by: sleddogs on April 03, 2009, 10:14:41 PM
Report hints at foul play in Mesa death

Updated: Friday, 03 Apr 2009, 5:55 PM MDT
Published : Friday, 03 Apr 2009, 5:10 PM MDT

    * Reporter: Kim Vallez
    * Web Producer: Devon Armijo

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - A 2003 police report revealed that one of the West Mesa victims likely met foul play.

The Albuquerque Police Department announced Friday that Monica Candelaria had been identified as one of the women who's bones were found on Albuquerque's West Mesa.

A police report shows Candelaria's mother reported her daughter missing in May of 2003.

The report shows a log of interviews conducted by Bernalillo County Sheriff's investigators.

In one entry a deputy cites a conversation with Candelaria's mother:

"Mrs. Candelaria told me that she heard from a friend that a person known as 'Isaac' (Savadera) was talking at a local barbershop that he knew that 'Monica' was killed and where she was taken to in the 'mesa.'"

The report does not cite any interview with 'Isaac,' but it did cite an interview with a woman who said that, "everybody had heard the rumor that Ms. Candelaria was killed."

The report also goes on to state human remains were found in the area of Pajarito dam, and the bones were of a small framed female in her late teens or early 20s.

Investigators compared the dental records of Candelaria to the bones and determined they were not a match.

The report ends shortly after that.

Undersheriff Sal Baragiola said the case was classified as a cold case in 2004, after about a year of investigation, but said the sheriff's department did follow several leads that came in after that time.

The case has been handed over to the task force handling the investigation of the West Mesa bones.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_2003_report_cites_possible_fould_play_200804031800


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (7 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on April 06, 2009, 10:45:50 AM
Mesa victims' families urge wider search

Posted: 4/6/09
The flames of white wax candles flickered in the dark just 20 minutes from the site where at least a dozen people were buried in a mass grave.

About 100 people held a candlelight vigil at Robinson Park on Saturday to honor the women whose bodies were found on the West Mesa.

The search for bodies, clues and answers continues on the dusty mesa where so far 12 bodies - 11 women and an unborn child - have been found at a patch of land near 118th Street and Dennis Chavez Road S.W.

The Albuquerque Police Department has used dental and medical records to identify seven of the victims: Monica Candelaria, Veronica Romero, Victoria Chavez, Cinnamon Elks, Julie Nieto, and Michelle Valdez and her unborn child.

All of the women found were in their 20s.

Daniel Valdez, father of Michelle, said that he and other family members of the victims plan to band together and pick up the investigation and search for evidence wherever the APD decides to leave off.

"I don't want them to finish," Valdez said. "I want them to turn all of that area out until they find all of (the) 18, or as many females that have been reported missing."

APD spokeswoman Nadine Hamby said the department doesn't plan to wrap up the West Mesa investigation anytime soon.

There are 25 to 30 investigators at the site at all times looking for bones, Hamby said.

"There are just a ton of resources that are being utilized out there right now," she said. "Many of those bodies aren't intact. Just three days ago we found a toe bone, and that's the reason why we're not leaving that site. There are minor, little, tiny bone fragments, and we are still out there trying to recover those."

Lupe Lopez, a former deputy sheriff, said her sister, Beatrice Lopez Cubelos, went missing in 1989 after leaving a friend's apartment on Second Street. Cubelos said her sister could be buried out on the West Mesa. If her body is not recovered because it was buried away from the bones of the other bodies, then the APD will have conducted an incomplete search and investigation, Lopez said.

Valdez said he has the same concern for the other girls who were reported missing around 2004, the time period when most of the identified victims went missing.

Valdez said he has contacted other national organizations and news networks to bring more attention to the West Mesa investigation.

"I was able to contact 'America's Most Wanted,'" Valdez said. "They were at the house this week and out at the dig site, and I've been in communication with two or three more national programs, so I'm taking this bull by the horns and I'm not letting it loose until it's over."

Lopez said that she, Valdez, and other family members of the West Mesa victims are going to start soliciting the help of community volunteers and UNM students. Archaeology students, criminal law students, public relations students and anyone else who wants to help continue the investigation after APD has packed up its last shovel are welcome to join the movement, Lopez said.

Valdez said no stone should go unturned in the investigation and that APD should broaden the site to include the neighborhoods that sit on the precipice of the mass grave.

"A human being is a human being," Valdez said. "There's no subdivision in Albuquerque that's worth the life of a human being. All the houses out there - if they have to move them to dig underneath them, they should. That should be the priority - to locate, identify and find all of the women that went missing around that time period."

Hamby said family members should seek approval from property owners before spearheading their own investigation.

"Keep in mind that that is also private property," Hamby said. "KB Homes does own that property. It's not like once we vacate that, people are going to be allowed to be there. That's not going to happen."

Calls to KB Homes were not returned Sunday.

Lopez said that she plans to work within the frame of the state's laws. However, no amount of departmental red tape will prevent her from following up on the APD's investigation, she said.

"Nothing is impossible, and I intend to go forth with this because I am like this: If I start something, I end it. I finish it.… I don't get cold feet," she said.
http://www.dailylobo.com/home/index.cfm?event=displayArticlePrinterFriendly&uStory_id=e5c6634b-bf66-414e-88e2-eee3de8275d1


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (7 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on April 21, 2009, 04:36:34 PM
Police Make ANOTHER ID From West Mesa Remains
UPDATED: 2:21 pm MDT April 21, 2009
Albuquerque police confirm Doreen Marquez as the seventh woman to be identified from the West Mesa remains case.
more details later....
http://www.koat.com/news/19242355/detail.html
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Albuquerque police ID 7th body

April 21, 2009 4:45 PM ET

ALBUQUERQUE (AP) - A seventh woman has been identified as among the victims whose remains were found at a partially completed subdivision on Albuquerque's west side.

Police Chief Ray Schultz on Tuesday identified her as Doreen Marquez of Albuquerque, who was 27 when she was last seen in October 2003.
(http://c4.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/23/m_d332279168fb4246ac3f0478e730ca0f.jpg)

Schultz says she matched the profile of 6 other identified victims.

He says Marquez had arrests for possession of narcotics and was known by Albuquerque police as being a prostitute, although she had not been arrested for that crime.

The state Office of the Medical Investigator used dental records from the Metropolitan Detention Center to identify her.

A search over the past three months has turned up the remains of 11 adults and one fetus.
http://www.newswest9.com/Global/story.asp?S=10223215&nav=menu505_2


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on April 28, 2009, 03:20:38 PM
Police in New Mexico stop digging at mass grave, saying they've recovered all evidence
7:55 PM EDT, April 24, 2009
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Police in New Mexico have ended a 12-week dig at one of the nation's largest crime scenes, where the bodies of 11 victims were unearthed at a construction site in the desert.

Albuquerque police Cmdr. Paul Feist said Friday that investigators have recovered all the evidence believed to be at the site.

Investigators have sifted through 40,000 cubic yards of dirt since early February. Seven of the 11 victims have been identified.

No arrests have been made.
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/nationworld/nation/wire/sns-ap-us-desert-bodies,0,2857669.story


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on May 02, 2009, 01:49:53 PM
Funerals on hold as mesa victims ID'd

Families of some of the women found buried on the West Mesa got a better idea Friday of when they'll have their loved ones' bodies returned to them.

Family members say the bodies are being sent two at a time from the OMI in New Mexico to a Texas facility for further examination.

It's been a long and frustrating wait, say family members, as they try to make funeral plans.

Of the seven identified victims found buried on the mesa, Veronica Romero left behind the most children—five of them. Her body has been at the Office of the Medical Investigator since February.

Her cousin says it has been tough to plan a funeral without knowing when they'll have her remains.

"We are going to have her cremated, but we haven't decided the whole thing yet. It's awful, I never thought I'd plan her funeral,” Desiree Gonzales said.

Veronica's cousin says right now, two bodies are at the University of North Texas being analyzed. They've been there for a month and are about to be shipped back to Albuquerque. When the remains of the women return to Albuquerque, Garcia's remains and another woman's will be shipped to the university.

"They're going to do more DNA and forensics. I'm hoping to find out how she got killed,” Gonzales said.

Also on Friday, police confirmed their “ersons of interest list,” which includes inmates in New Mexico and Texas.

Veronica's cousin says police are planning on talking to two of Veronica's ex-boyfriends.

“Between me and my family, our closure won't close until we know for sure that whoever did this gets their closure,” Gonzales said.

Veronica's cousin is optimistic the family will receive the remains before July 19—what would be Veronica's 33rd birthday.
http://www.kob.com/article/stories/S910497.shtml?cat=504


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on May 02, 2009, 01:51:43 PM
A comment at Topix that is well worth posting....

POSTED BY:
My two cents
Albuquerque, NM

This story is so sad to me. I feel sorry for these families. I hope people can look beyond the lifestyle that these women led in the last days of thier lives. It is just heart breaking. Truly there but by the grace of God go me or my family member..There is such a fine line that keeps us from crossing to the other side...I do hope they can figure out how they died and most important who did this terrible thing in order to provide some closure for these families. Get their bodies home so they can have their funerals and let these girls at last rest in peace.
http://www.topix.net/forum/source/kob-new-mexico/TK190HAH548QRH37N


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on May 15, 2009, 12:56:20 PM
Identities of Bodies Found on Mesa Emerge, but Killer Remains Cloaked
Published: May 14, 2009
ALBUQUERQUE — Three months after the remains of 11 adults and a fetus were found buried on a dust-swept mesa here, the police say they are making progress in solving the killings. But relatives of the victims are skeptical.

Seven sets of remains have been identified, and the similarities are haunting. All were young women. All had drifted into prostitution or drugs. And all matched a police list of young women who had vanished off the streets of Albuquerque from 2001 to 2006.

Clues have been hard to come by, however, and digging at the 100-acre crime scene was suspended last month. On April 24, the police released photographs of a beige acrylic fingernail belonging to one of the victims, hoping someone would recognize the salon that produced it. But there have been no matches.

An “America’s Most Wanted” segment on the deaths, which was broadcast on April 25, generated dozens of tips, but most turned out to be psychic “premonitions” about the case, said Officer Nadine Hamby, a spokeswoman for the Albuquerque Police Department.

Investigators are also now looking into “persons of interest” in the case, both alive and dead, Officer Hamby said. That includes people incarcerated in New Mexico and Texas and those with a criminal history of soliciting prostitutes and drugs.

“Not only is the chief confident,” Officer Hamby said, “but the entire task force is confident that we’re going to find who’s responsible for these poor victims.”

Still, many families of the victims have grown uneasy with the handling of the case. They praise the resources law enforcement has devoted to the crime scene but insist it has come too late.

Monica Candelaria’s remains were among those discovered on the mesa. Her mother, Isabel Candelaria, said that shortly after her daughter disappeared in May 2003, she reported to a Bernalillo County sheriff’s detective that a man in her neighborhood named Isaac was overheard saying that Monica Candelaria had been killed and taken to the mesa.

Unconvinced that the police would follow up, Ms. Candelaria said her family spent nearly a month scouring the same land where her daughter’s body would be discovered years later.

A 2003 missing persons report from the Sheriff’s Department confirms Ms. Candelaria’s account. The report said that after Ms. Candelaria informed the department about Isaac, a detective had searched an area near the mesa; the report said that a human jawbone was found there but that it did not match Monica Candelaria’s. The report also shows the matter was turned over to the cold case unit, which followed leads.

“I knew my daughter was buried out there, I just didn’t know if they would ever find her remains,” Ms. Candelaria said. “Maybe some of the girls’ lives would have been saved if they had found my daughter’s body then.”

Like other victims’ family members, Desireé Gonzales, whose cousin Veronica Romero was also found on the mesa, told of filling out missing persons reports and blanketing the city with posters shortly after Ms. Romero went missing in 2004. Ms. Gonzales said she had lost hope the case would ever be cracked.

“They haven’t done nothing for all these years,” she said of the police.

At a meeting on April 30, families said the police told them not to speak with reporters or they would risk ruining the investigation. Many left the meeting feeling frightened and confused, said Dan Valdez, whose daughter Michelle was found on the mesa with her unborn fetus.

“They want people to forget about this,” Mr. Valdez said. “But I’m not going to let them, and neither is anybody else.”

Officer Hamby said the police simply requested that families keep important information to themselves for now.

Meanwhile, families have taken to holding public vigils and meetings. Last week, after being approached by a few victims’ families, Clear Channel Outdoor New Mexico began running images of the seven identified women, along with the number for a tip hot line, on 17 of its digital billboards here.

Lori Gallegos, whose friend Doreen Marquez was buried on the mesa, said the families remained fearful their loved ones would be forgotten.

“The police have done an outstanding job with the crime scene,” Ms. Gallegos said. “But right now, the families don’t know who to trust. They don’t know who to believe.”
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/15/us/15mesa.html?ref=global-home


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on June 04, 2009, 08:52:53 PM
Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico) 
June 4, 2009 Thursday 
 
W. Mesa Victim May Not Be Local;
Slain Woman May Have Been a 'Circuit' Prostitute
 
Detectives believe one of the unidentified female victims found in a shallow grave on the West Mesa earlier this year was probably not from Albuquerque.

"She was not reported missing in Albuquerque," APD spokeswoman Nadine Hamby told the Journal on Wednesday. "We think she may have been a circuit girl: a woman who works in the prostitution trade along (Interstate 40) stopping in various cities."

The woman's physical description - black, in her mid-teens to early 20s and between 5 feet 2 inches and 5 feet 10 inches tall - does not match anyone on a list of missing women who struggled with substance abuse and prostitution that police began to compile more than five years ago.

The seven mesa victims who have been identified so far all were on the list, which contains about 10 names, and all were from or had close ties to Albuquerque.

In late April, police released a photograph of detailed artwork on an acrylic fingernail investigators found attached to the woman's skeleton near 118th and Dennis Chavez SW in February.

They had hoped a friend or family member would recognize the artwork, come forward and identify the woman.

"Unfortunately, that has not happened," Hamby said.

On Wednesday, the Office of the Medical Investigator gave detectives several other details about the woman.

Also attached to the skeleton - on its skull - were a number of "tight, curly hairs," Hamby said. Based on the hairs and the lengths of other bones, detectives were able to complete a physical description of her.

She was wearing a lightbrown hair weave at the time she was killed, Hamby said.

At one time or another, the woman's nose had been broken, and she had been stabbed or severely cut on her leg, Hamby said. Neither of those injuries is connected to the way the woman was killed, according to police.

The OMI has yet to determine cause or manner of death for any of the 11 women whose remains were discovered on the mesa.

Authorities do not have a DNA sample from any of the unidentified remains, Hamby said. That's because the University of North Texas' forensic experts are doing the DNA testing for the West Mesa case, and only the identified victims' remains have been sent to the school's lab in Denton, Texas, so far.

"The ID'd ones are the priority for now," she said, "so those remains can be processed and their families can get them back."

Authorities have not been able to figure out who the four unidentified women are through dental records, either, Hamby said.

Identified so far are: Victoria Chavez, Gina Michelle Valdez, Julie Nieto, Cinnamon Elks, Veronica Romero, Monica Candelaria and Doreen Marquez.

During the past several weeks, police have served two search warrants seeking evidence in the West Mesa case. Both warrants have been sealed by a judge, and police have declined to discuss details of what was found.

Detectives have been in Arizona, Texas and throughout New Mexico following leads the past month or so.

Albuquerque detectives have also spoken with authorities in Wisconsin about a possible connection between the West Mesa killings and a similar case there.

Milwaukee police say they've linked seven cases there to a possible serial killer who's suspected in a number of prostitute killings over more than two decades. Authorities there said Tuesday they had linked another dead prostitute to the suspected killer - whose identity is not known - using DNA evidence. The one victim not connected to prostitution was involved in drugs.

The homicides in Wisconsin occurred between 1986 and 2007 on the city's north side. Now, officers have submitted or resubmitted DNA samples from more than two dozen unsolved homicides to see if they are connected.

The West Mesa victims were likely killed and buried between 2003 and 2005, police say.

Police Chief Ray Schultz said detectives are beginning to zero in on a list of fewer than 10 potential suspects in the case, although the word "suspect" remains somewhat inaccurate because OMI is still awaiting peer review to fully determine the cause and manner of the women's deaths. 
http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=574&topicId=100020825&docId=l:983902780&start=2


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on June 08, 2009, 03:29:32 PM
It's time to go home Gina...time to go home
(http://bestsmileys.com/flowers/1.gif)
West Mesa victim's remains heading home
Updated: Sunday, 07 Jun 2009, 5:49 PM MDT

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The Office of the Medical Investigator will release the remains of at least one of the women found buried on Albuquerque's West Mesa.

The family of Gina Michelle Valdez said OMI told them that it will release her remains.
Valdez was the victim who was pregnant at time of her death.

After four years of wondering, her father Dan Valdez was notified that his daughter was one of the 11 bodies found buried on the West Mesa earlier this year.

The call came three weeks after police unearthed the first set of bones.

"Yes I was hoping she was alive until proven otherwise I had faith in god he was going to keep her safe and bring her home one day well he's brought her home," Valdez said.

The Valdez family is planning funeral services for Michelle later this week.

OMI hasn't said if they will release the remains of the other six identified women who were found on the West Mesa.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_west_mesa_victims_remains_heading_home_200906071741


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: MuffyBee on June 11, 2009, 09:10:24 PM
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_DESERT_BODIES?SITE=FLTAM&SECTION=US
Jun 11, 8:10 PM EDT

Autopsies: 2 found in mass NM grave were murdered

Advertisement


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) -- Authorities have released the first two autopsies of the 11 people found in a mass grave in the desert west of Albuquerque.

They confirm that 31-year-old Cinnamon Elks and 22-year-old Michelle Valdez were victims of homicide.

The women's remains, along with those of Valdez's fetus and nine other adults, were found in February at a construction site that was being leveled in preparation for a subdivision. Four of the victims have yet to be identified.

The two autopsies released Thursday by the state Office of the Medical Investigator say Elks and Valdez were killed by "undetermined homicidal violence."

Police are looking for similar crimes elsewhere that may help them solve the case.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Sister on June 13, 2009, 04:45:28 PM
My goodness, if reading this doesn't make a person take stock in what really matters in our lives, nothing will.  My heart is aching for these families . . . my prayers remain steadfast for all of them to have the "peace that passes all understanding."


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on June 14, 2009, 08:14:25 PM
Police chief talks of tough spring in Albuquerque

Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz remembers the moment at a news conference when his voice choked up and his eyes filled with tears.

In a subdued tone, he told the nation last month that a mother had suffocated her 3-year-old son and buried him in a city playground. Schultz then noticed his detectives, watching him from behind the row of television cameras.

"One of the toughest things for me," he recalled, "was looking back at the news conference, at the back of the room, and seeing my detectives all with watered-up eyes."

It's been a hard year for Albuquerque.

Two crime stories - Ty Toribio's death allegedly at the hands of his mother, Tiffany, and the discovery in February of 11 bodies and a fetus buried in a subdivision site on a desert mesa - have repeatedly thrust New Mexico's largest city into the national spotlight this year.

The 27-year Albuquerque police veteran said "a feeling of sadness" has settled over the fast-growing city of nearly 500,000 people.

After another tragic incident - the drowning death of a teenage boy in the Rio Grande in May - Schultz said he was stopped by countless people who wanted to talk about the fragility of life, and how quickly a tragedy can take over.

"It has been a tough spring on everybody," he said.

Candlelight vigils have been held for the women found in the desert, and families who are still waiting to see if their daughters or mothers are among the victims joined them. Mourners piled toys, candles and flowers at a makeshift memorial near the play structure where Ty Toribio's body was found.

Mindful of the boy's family, Schultz sat alone in his office before the news conference. He wrote down key phrases he'd use, and wondered about how the family would remember his words.

"If I was the family, what would I want to hear?" Schultz said he asked himself. "Don't go into the gory details, but at the same time, what do I need to tell the community so the community can kind of rest easy?"

Schultz has dealt with big crime news before. Weeks after he came out of retirement in Scottsdale, Ariz., to become Albuquerque's chief, the so-called Runaway Bride - Jennifer Wilbanks - fled to the city just before her wedding.

Schultz said he received 1,200 e-mails from people wanting to praise and criticize him for how he treated Wilbanks, who pleaded no contest to telling authorities a phony story and served two years' probation.

The e-mails he's received about the remains uncovered in February by a hiker at a 92-acre site that had been bulldozed for a residential subdivision are more somber. Some are from as far away as France, and many are from parents desperately searching for their missing children. Schultz said he answers them himself.

Four sets of remains are unidentified, but the other seven belonged to women reported missing between 2001 and 2006. The women had a history of prostitution and many struggled with drug addiction before they disappeared in 2003-2004, police say.

Law enforcement agencies are paying attention to how the department, which has created a multiagency task force, investigates the case, Schultz said. He hopes that out of the tragedy can come lessons for other law enforcement agencies.

So far, police say they have found no links with crimes elsewhere and the suspect list continues to fluctuate as they follow up on tips.

Schultz said one of the main questions is why the crimes came to a halt several years ago.

"These all happened between 2000 and 2005 and they seem to have stopped in 2005. What happened? Is your offender somewhere else, doing this somewhere else now? Is he dead? Is he incarcerated? ... Did he get married and have kids and change his lifestyle?" he asked.

Schultz has had to balance getting information out nationally to try to catch a suspect - America's Most Wanted filmed a segment on the crime at the burial site, for example. But he doesn't want to paint a portrait of Albuquerque that's too bleak.

Violent crime, including murders and robberies, in the city dropped from 2007 to 2008, just as such crimes declined nationally, according to FBI statistics.

"You have to be careful because you don't want it to look like, 'Oh, my gosh, the sky is falling,'" he said.

http://www.bradenton.com/439/story/1508635.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on June 19, 2009, 06:24:48 PM
Woman's Death May Be Related To West Mesa Case
Thursday, 18 June 2009 16:06

Body found several years ago on Isleta Pueblo, ID'd today
A few hours ago, authorities positively identified Sonia Bernadette Lente as the woman whose body was found on Isleta Pueblo several years ago, FBI spokesman Darrin Jones tells ABQjournal.com.

Jones could not recall the exact date her body was found.

Lente was on a list of about 20 women Albuquerque police have been scrutinizing in an effort to identify the last four sets of remains uncovered on the Far Southwest Mesa earlier this year. Seven of those victims have already been identified.

Jones said it is yet unclear whether there is a connection between Lente's death and the women buried on the mesa.

"The question we're asking now is, was this victim related in any way to" the West Mesa case, he said. "It may not be directly related, but it hasn't been ruled out."

Pick up a copy of tomorrow's Journal for more details on this story.
http://www.abqjournal.com/abqnews/crime-blotter-mainmenu-59/13276-breaking-womans-death-may-be-related-to-west-mesa-case.html


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count 13 / New Mexico (9 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on June 19, 2009, 06:26:21 PM
These some of the known missing women, let their names not be forgotten.

Darlene Trujillo missing since 2001

Sonia Lente missing since 2002/BODY FOUND 2004 on Isleta Pueblo ID'd 2009
(http://www.abqjournal.com/abqnews/images/sonja.jpg)

Monica Candalaria missing since 2003/BODY FOUND
(http://tbn3.google.com/images?q=tbn:dtaLDvsHcGp3tM:http://www.bernco.gov/upload/images/Monica-Candelaria.jpg)

Jamie Barela missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://www.kob.com/kobtvimages/jaime_barela_poss_west_mesa_victim121009.jpg)

Cinnamon Elks missing since 2004 /BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18903678_240X180.jpg)

Veronica Romero missing since 2004/BODY FOUND
(http://kob.com/kobtvimages/veronica_romero.jpg)

Victoria Chavez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://helpfindthemissing.org/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=851&stc=1&thumb=1&d=1234301967)

Michelle Gina Valdez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND w/Fetus
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v63/Maverick1862/murder%20victims/GinaMichelleValdez.jpg)

Virginia Cloven missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://209.85.48.11/6223/137/upload/p11156230.jpg)

Doreen Marquez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://c4.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/23/m_d332279168fb4246ac3f0478e730ca0f.jpg)

Julie Nieto missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18908539_240X180.jpg)

Evelyn Salazar missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://209.85.48.11/6223/137/upload/p8377058.jpg)

Anselma Guerra missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND but not on Mesa
Info here > http://tinyurl.com/ce8mv2

Syllannia Edwards / BODY FOUND /not on list (missing from Oklahoma 8/2003)
(http://kwtv.images.worldnow.com/images/11500384_BG2.jpg)

Anna Vigil missing since 2005
Felipa Gonzales missing since 2005
Nina Herron missing since 2005
Shawntell Waltes missing since 2006
Leah Peebles missing since 2006

http://www.topix.com/forum/source/kob-new-mexico/TV7FGN5QNJ4GK78A8
BUMP


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on July 10, 2009, 08:53:11 AM
http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/07/09/new.mexico.killings/index.html

Photo Summary to date:
The bodies of Candelaria, Chavez, Elks, Marquez, Nieto, Romero and Valdez were all ID'd by New Mexico police.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Mtnmom on September 12, 2009, 01:12:16 PM
http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_albuquerque_fair_prostitutes_may_solve_west_mesa_200909102122

Fair prostitutes help West Mesa murders
Reporter: Alex Tomlin
Albuquerque - The New Mexico State Fair and West Mesa murder mystery couldn't seem further apart, but police say they are closely linked.

The fair kicks off Friday and investigators hope prostitutes coming into town for the event will lead them to a killer.

Every year dozens of prostitutes travel to New Mexico as part as a circuit that stops at the State Fair and police hope they can help them solve the mystery of eleven women found buried on Albuquerque's west mesa.

Investigators unearthed 11 women in a vacant lot at 118th Street earlier this year. Seven of them have been identified but four sets of remains are still labeled as Jane Does.

Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz said all of the indentified women were connected to Albuquerque.

“There’s a possibility that one or more of the four unidentified women may have come from somewhere else," he said.

Now police are turning to the State Fair and prostitutes who are only in town for the two-week event. “We feel that it is very important that we spend the time on the fair grounds and that we identify women that are normally not here in Albuquerque to talk to them and see if they have any information that might help us on this case."

Schultz said police are focused on the years between 2000 and 2005 when they believe the unidentified women went missing and will be questioning several people.

“It not only includes women that are working on the streets but also customers of those women," he said.

He said the smallest detail could crack this case wide open.

Tips continue to pour in on the case, especially since America's Most Wanted continues to profile it. The information has investigators continuously updating their suspect list.

"We have people that have been there from the beginning and people who get added to the list and taken off the list," and there are about six people on the list right now, Schultz said.

He cautioned, however, that just because the list has more names added doesn't mean investigators are loosing their grasp, or if the list shrinks, it doesn't necessarily mean they are closing in on their killer.

Prostitution is illegal and Schultz said that anyone caught in the act will be prosecuted.

DNA profiles of the four unidentified women are now complete and are being run through criminal and missing person’s databases looking for a match.

Facial reconstruction of the remains to determine what the women looked like should begin shortly.

If you have any information on the West Mesa murder mystery, call 877-SOLV-APD.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on September 12, 2009, 07:45:37 PM
I know what Fair Rats are, but I never really thought about Fair Hookers ...  ::MonkeyEek::  ::MonkeyNoNo:: So much for family entertainment  ::MonkeyNoNo::


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on September 17, 2009, 08:59:08 PM
Hat Tip/Muffy

DNA from 2006 sexual assault matches Albuquerque crimes

By Andrea Lorenz | Thursday, September 17, 2009, 04:01 PM

Police in Albuquerque, N.M., have matched the DNA from a serial rapist in that area with DNA found at the scene of a sexual assault in Austin in 2006, Austin police Cpl. Scott Perry said.

The nature of the assaults had made it difficult to create a sketch of the suspect because in each case, the man put a rag soaked in a chemical over the woman’s face and knocked her out before assaulting her, Perry said. In the Austin incident, which took place in May 2006, a man assaulted a woman while she was sleeping in her home on 55 1/2 Street, Perry said.

Recently, police were able to create a sketch of the suspect from the Austin and Albuquerque cases thanks to a possible botched sexual assault during a robbery.

Albuquerque police matched the DNA from the suspect they believe committed several rapes in that city between 1991 and 2001 with DNA found in an unsolved robbery case. The victim in that incident told police the man tried to put a rag over her face, but she was able to fight him off and see his face.

Anyone with information about the suspect pictured below should call Austin police, or 911.
(http://alt.coxnewsweb.com/shared-blogs/austin/blotter/upload/2009/09/sexual_assault_suspect_dna_fro/APS%20Ether%20Man%20Sketch%201-thumb.jpg)
http://www.statesman.com/blogs/content/shared-gen/blogs/austin/blotter/entries/2009/09/17/sexual_assault_suspect_dna_fro.html
http://scaredmonkeys.net/index.php?topic=6142.new#new


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on September 25, 2009, 09:21:52 PM
Report: Murder victim's cause of death unknown

Posted at: 09/24/2009 4:04 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - An autopsy report released Thursday for a woman whose remains were found in a mass grave on the west side of Albuquerque concludes she was murdered.
The remains of 28-year-old Victoria Chavez were uncovered in February.

She was the first of the 11 victims and a fetus buried at the site to be identified.

The autopsy report says her skeletal remains were unclothed and no personal effects were found near her.

It says there were no injuries that could explain exactly how Chavez died.

http://www.kob.com/article/stories/s1157501.shtml?cat=504

suffocation/strangulation is my bet.... The hyoid bone was obviously not broken, but it isn't always broken in strangulations.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on October 22, 2009, 12:56:08 PM
One of the victims was found to have an unusual set of acrylic fingernails . These nails may help detectives identify this particular individual.

(http://www.cabq.gov/police/index--118th/images/fingernail_small.jpg)
Investigators have determined that the nail art was not available in the Albuquerque area during the time period they believe the victim was killed. Detectives think that she may have been from or had traveled to another state just prior to her death.

Detectives are currently looking for leads and would like to know more about the identified victims. Investigators would like to hear from women who may have been working the streets of Albuquerque between 2001 and 2005, or anyone who may have solicited the victims during that period of time.

For more about this case visit West Mesa Bone Collector at America's Most Wanted.

Anyone with information concerning the victims and/or potential suspects is asked to contact the 118th Street Task Force at 1-877-765-8273 or Crime Stoppers at (505) 843-STOP.
http://www.cabq.gov/police/index--118th/index--118th.htm


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (9 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on November 13, 2009, 04:19:53 PM
Friday, November 13, 2009 at 1:28 p.m.

8th Victim identified in Albuquerque (9th/includes 1 w/child)


(AP) -- ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - The state Office of the Medical Investigator has identified an eighth victim among the remains found buried on Albuquerque's west side as a runaway from Oklahoma.

Albuquerque police spokeswoman Nadine Hamby said Friday Syllannia Edwards was 15-years-old when she was reported missing in Lawton, Okla., in August 2003.

Hamby says Edwards is the first of the identified victims to come from outside New Mexico.

Police unearthed the remains of 11 victims and a fetus in the mass grave in February.

The medical examiner's director of operations Amy Boule says employees compared a forensic sketch they made of the victim based on a skull with photos of missing children posted online.

Boule says they found Edwards' photograph and a positive identification was made through dental records.

http://www.connectamarillo.com/news/news_story.aspx?id=376866


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (9 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on November 13, 2009, 04:56:47 PM
Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico)
 
November 13, 2009 Friday 
 
Eighth West Mesa Murder Victim Identified;
Teen doesn't fit profile, might provide break
 
Officials are "cautiously optimistic" that Syllannia Edwards may provide the final bread crumbs on the trail to the most prolific killer in Albuquerque history.

Edwards on Wednesday became the eighth of the 11 West Mesa murder victims to be identified, and she does not fit the profile of the other women, officials said. She was 15 years old when she was reported missing from Lawton, Okla., in August 2003, officials said. She was black and had no known ties to Albuquerque.

The other women found buried in shallow graves near 118th and Dennis Chavez SW earlier this year were in their 20s and 30s. They were local women who knew one another and whose lives had intersected through substance abuse and prostitution. They were white or Hispanic.

"When you have a case like this with a serial killer, there is sometimes just one oddball piece of the puzzle that doesn't make any sense," said one official who is familiar with the investigation. "But we're hoping (Edwards) will be crucial to solving this case, crucial in breaking it wide open. The other (victims) all kind of blended into the landscape. But (Edwards) may be unique enough to really help the investigation out."

Detectives spent all day Wednesday and Thursday trying to sort out when Edwards came to Albuquerque, who might have brought her here and who may have known her. Police have narrowed their list of suspects in the case to a "small handful." Numerous search warrants have been served in the course of the investigation, including some in the past few weeks. All the warrants have been sealed, and investigators won't discuss what's been found.

Edwards has been listed as an "endangered runaway" on the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children since her disappearance.

She had been in foster care in Oklahoma, officials said. She had not seen her mother since she was 5, and she never knew her father. In late April, police released a photograph of an acrylic fingernail that was found with Edwards' remains. Investigators hoped the unique work done on the nail would help identify her.

And, a few weeks ago, forensic experts completed a sketch of Edwards' face based on skeletal reconstruction.

Finally, Wendy Honeyfield at the Office of the Medical Investigator was able to identify Edwards through dental records.

Nearly seven months had passed since authorities last identified one of the victims. Now, three of the 11 remain unidentified. 
http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=574&topicId=100020825&docId=l:1074452106&start=4


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (8 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on November 13, 2009, 05:13:30 PM
One of the victims was found to have an unusual set of acrylic fingernails . These nails may help detectives identify this particular individual.

(http://www.cabq.gov/police/index--118th/images/fingernail_small.jpg)
Investigators have determined that the nail art was not available in the Albuquerque area during the time period they believe the victim was killed. Detectives think that she may have been from or had traveled to another state just prior to her death.

Detectives are currently looking for leads and would like to know more about the identified victims. Investigators would like to hear from women who may have been working the streets of Albuquerque between 2001 and 2005, or anyone who may have solicited the victims during that period of time.

For more about this case visit West Mesa Bone Collector at America's Most Wanted.

Anyone with information concerning the victims and/or potential suspects is asked to contact the 118th Street Task Force at 1-877-765-8273 or Crime Stoppers at (505) 843-STOP.
http://www.cabq.gov/police/index--118th/index--118th.htm


This one ID'd as Syllannia Edwards 15, of Lawton, Oklahoma


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (9 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on November 18, 2009, 07:09:10 AM
Two more mesa victims identified
Updated: Tuesday, 17 Nov 2009, 2:55 PM MST

Web Producer: Todd Dukart
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Police on Tuesday announced that two more victims whose bodies were found on Albuquerque's West Mesa have been identified.

Virginia Cloven, born in 1981, and Evelyn Salazar, born in 1978, were identified through DNA.

Both women were reported missing in 2004, and both are from Albuquerque.

With Cloven and Salazar, police have now identified 10 of the 11 women who were buried nude between 2001 and 2005 in a mass grave on Albuquerque's West Mesa.

Police spokesperson Nadine Hamby said it's not yet known if Cloven or Salazar were involved in drugs or prostitution like some of the earlier identified victims were.

The remains were discovered in February.

Anybody with information that could help is asked to call the Albuquerque Police Department tip line at 1-877-SOLV-APD (1-877-765-8273).
http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/two-more-mesa-victims-identified


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count at 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on December 10, 2009, 10:00:04 PM
12/10/2009 7:20 PM

Woman believes daughter is unidentified West Mesa victim

The mother of a missing woman believes the only unidentified body found buried on Albuquerque's West Mesa is her daughter.

Jayne Perea's niece, Evelyn Salazar, was recently identified as one of the 11 victims.

Salazar went missing with Perea's daughter, Jaime Barela, in 2004.

Perea says investigators have promised an answer on the 11th victim in about two weeks.

http://www.kob.com/article/stories/S1305303.shtml?cat=504
(http://www.kob.com/kobtvimages/jaime_barela_poss_west_mesa_victim121009.jpg)
Jaime Barela went missing with her cousin in 2004


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: MuffyBee on December 10, 2009, 10:32:05 PM
Thanks for the updates Nut.  I hope the last victim can be identified.  I'm surprised so many of them have been identified.  When I first read of the case, I was concerned we might never know who they are.  And now their families and friends can know where their loved ones are and give them a decent burial.  Maybe some were clinging to hope they were alive, but I think the not knowing would be terrible too.  So many women needlessly dead.   ::MonkeyNoNo:: 


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on December 18, 2009, 06:31:55 PM
Muffy, the NOT knowing would literally kill me. I will never understand how people go on not knowing. I don't want to get into my personal non-beliefs, but I have no faith. All I have is hope and I know that would not sustain me through a time like that. Even hope wouldn't get me far because I am and always have been a pessimist / realist. I suppose many who suffer a loss in not knowing have 'faith' that they feel helps them go on. I dunnooo...anywayyyyyyyyy, here is the latest.....

Mesa murder case gets national airing
Updated: Thursday, 17 Dec 2009, 5:42 PM MST
Published : Thursday, 17 Dec 2009, 5:31 PM MST

Web Producer: Bill Diven
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The murder mystery surrounding the discovery of 11 women's bodies unearthed from Albuquerque's will receive national attention again this weekend from the television crime show America's Most Wanted.

Starting in February investigators working a 100-acre crime scene recovered the skeletal remains from what eventually became a 100-acre crime scene. Ten of the women were eventually identified as having disappeared in Albuquerque from 2001 to 2005.

All were described living high-risk lifestyles.

Police are looking at several suspects, but so far no one has been arrested.

America's Most Wanted has been successful in helping flush out wanted criminals for years.

The episode airs Saturday at 8 p.m. on KASA Fox 2.

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/mesa-murder-case-gets-national-airing


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on December 19, 2009, 09:21:09 PM
I believe this is coming up after the break on AMW --now.


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on December 20, 2009, 07:08:00 PM
(http://media.amw.com/multimedia/fileRepository/db/472/207/dental-ENLG.jpg)
Police hope dental x-rays will help them identify the last unidentified woman

http://www.amw.com/fugitives/brief.cfm?id=64720


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on December 20, 2009, 07:31:08 PM
(http://greginthedesert.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/amole-mesa-albuquerque-new-mexico.jpg)
When the crime scene is gone the housing construction will continue


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on December 20, 2009, 07:57:42 PM
This is interesting......

Amole Mesa: A crime scene revealed in aerial photos?

Just something to think about, should you be looking at aerial photographs as part of your job. It’s entirely possible that I looked at the 2004 aerial when working on GIS at the City.

Here is the Amole Mesa site in 2002:
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v477/motownmutt/NM/Amole_mesa_2002b.jpg)

Here, the site shows tire tracks leading to a couple areas of disturbed earth in 2004:
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v477/motownmutt/NM/amole_mesa_tracks_graves3.jpg)

Here, the site is shown graded over in 2006:
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v477/motownmutt/NM/Amole_mesa_grading1.jpg)



Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on December 20, 2009, 07:58:25 PM
OOPsss....... link for above
http://motownmutt.wordpress.com/2009/03/10/amole-mesa-a-crime-scene-revealed-in-aerial-photos/


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (12 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on January 27, 2010, 02:38:35 PM
Final West Mesa victim identified
DNA confirms victim was Jamie Barela
Updated: Tuesday, 26 Jan 2010, 5:41 PM MST
Published : Tuesday, 26 Jan 2010, 3:57 PM MST

Albuquerque police on Tuesday said DNA shows the final unidentified victim of the West Mesa serial murders was Jamie Barela, a 15-year-old girl reported missing in April 2004.

Barela was last seen leaving a family gathering with her cousin, Evelyn Salzar, who had earlier been identified as another victim. The two at the time were heading to a park near San Mateo and Gibson in southeast Albuquerque.

The remains of 11 women were found buried nude in a mass grave on Albuquerque's West Mesa last February. Police said the victims had been buried between 2001 and 2005.

The first 10 victims that had been identified all had histories of drug use and prostitution, according to police.

The University of North Texas helped test the DNA of the victims to help identify them.

Police have not named any suspects, but said they have zeroed in on a few people. They said they are sure the killer is not still roaming the streets.

The 118th Street Task Force is still investigating the deaths. Anybody with information that could help is asked to call the Albuquerque Police Department tip line at 1-877-SOLV-APD (1-877-765-8273).
http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/final-west-mesa-victim-identified


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery ... body count 13 / New Mexico / ALL ID'd
Post by: Nut44x4 on January 27, 2010, 02:51:09 PM
These some of the known missing women, let their names not be forgotten.

Darlene Trujillo missing since 2001

Sonia Lente missing since 2002/BODY FOUND 2004 on Isleta Pueblo ID'd 2009
(http://www.abqjournal.com/abqnews/images/sonja.jpg)

Monica Candalaria missing since 2003/BODY FOUND
(http://tbn3.google.com/images?q=tbn:dtaLDvsHcGp3tM:http://www.bernco.gov/upload/images/Monica-Candelaria.jpg)

Jamie Barela missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://www.kob.com/kobtvimages/jaime_barela_poss_west_mesa_victim121009.jpg)

Cinnamon Elks missing since 2004 /BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18903678_240X180.jpg)

Veronica Romero missing since 2004/BODY FOUND
(http://kob.com/kobtvimages/veronica_romero.jpg)

Victoria Chavez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://helpfindthemissing.org/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=851&stc=1&thumb=1&d=1234301967)

Michelle Gina Valdez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND w/Fetus
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v63/Maverick1862/murder%20victims/GinaMichelleValdez.jpg)

Virginia Cloven missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://209.85.48.11/6223/137/upload/p11156230.jpg)

Doreen Marquez missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://c4.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/23/m_d332279168fb4246ac3f0478e730ca0f.jpg)

Julie Nieto missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://www.koat.com/2009/0311/18908539_240X180.jpg)

Evelyn Salazar missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND
(http://209.85.48.11/6223/137/upload/p8377058.jpg)

Anselma Guerra missing since 2004 / BODY FOUND but not on Mesa
Info here > http://tinyurl.com/ce8mv2

Syllannia Edwards / BODY FOUND /not on list (missing from Oklahoma 8/2003)
(http://kwtv.images.worldnow.com/images/11500384_BG2.jpg)

Anna Vigil missing since 2005
Felipa Gonzales missing since 2005
Nina Herron missing since 2005
Shawntell Waltes missing since 2006
Leah Peebles missing since 2006

http://www.topix.com/forum/source/kob-new-mexico/TV7FGN5QNJ4GK78A8
BUMP


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (ALL 13 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on February 07, 2010, 01:28:21 PM
Killer in N.M. still not caught
Yearlong probe fails to identify women's murderer

by Heather Clark
Associated Press Writer
Article Last Updated; Sunday, February 07, 2010  12:23

AMALBUQUERQUE - Authorities are looking for men who hire prostitutes and are prone to violence as they try to find out who killed 11 women and buried their bodies in a desert mesa on Albuquerque's southwest side.
But one year after the first human bone was discovered by a hiker, detectives remain tightlipped about what they've learned.

“We've got all our victims identified, so now johns are one of the groups of people that we are definitely focusing on," Police Chief Ray Schultz said.

All the victims are female, and all but one are from Albuquerque. Almost all the victims worked as prostitutes before they disappeared from 2003 to early 2005.

“We're especially looking for information on johns, people who were picking up women involved in prostitution, that were threatening, violent, attempting to force women to do things that the women did not want to do, people that were overly aggressive, people that were irrational," Schultz said.

The chief is careful not to close the door on any theories and said the suspect most likely is a male who acted alone. He declined to elaborate, citing the ongoing investigation. The suspects include a man who was killed in 2006 by a pimp who caught him stuffing a prostitute's body into a car trunk; a pimp who died of natural causes in 2009; and two people who are in prison.

Asked about release dates for the imprisoned suspects, Schultz said: “At this point in time, no one's close to being released."

The FBI has provided a profile of the suspect, but Schultz wouldn't discuss details.

The department has six employees committed full-time to the case and sometimes other officers are called to help them. Schultz hopes a reward, boosted to $100,000 in December, will loosen lips.

Schultz denied the case has gone cold. A forensics laboratory at the University of North Texas, which identified most of the victims, continues to provide other clues from the remains, Schultz said. He declined to say what information was received.

“We continue to learn more about these 11 women and their lifestyles and their associates and what they were doing just before they were reported missing," he said.

Schultz said the case remains one of the department's top priorities.

“Every day I hope when I see the detectives come up here, I hope they're going to have that information for me," he said.

http://durangoherald.com/sections/News/2010/02/07/Killer__in_NM_still_not_caught/


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (ALL 13 ID'd)
Post by: Nut44x4 on August 04, 2010, 07:04:16 AM
August 3, 2010
 
West Mesa Murder case focuses on Joplin, Mo. man

Joplin, Mo. — 

Four police officers from Albuquerque, N.M., searched two properties in Joplin, Mo. Tuesday as part of an ongoing investigation into what has been called the West Mesa Murders.
Parts of 12 bodies — all women — plus remains of a fetus have been uncovered in a remote area of Albuquerque since 2009. It is being characterized as one of the largest crime scenes in that city’s history.
Police from Albuquerque's 118th St. task force were being tight-lipped Tuesday as they searched two properties on Main Street in Joplin. Detective Tod Babcock, who is with the task force, described Ron Erwin of Joplin as a “person of interest,’ but added he is “one of many.”
Erwin is the owner of a building and house that were searched. Law enforcement officials from Albuquerque, Joplin and the Federal Bureau of Investigation were on the scene.
Nadine Hamby, spokesperson for the Albuquerque Police Department, would not provide any details other than to say it was a sealed search warrant being served in connection with a cache of bones that were found in the West Mesa area in early 2009.
She said the investigation is in the evidence-gathering phase and no one is in custody.
The investigation began when hikers accidentally came across some remains in an area that was being cleared for a housing development.
The initial discovery brought detectives, anthropologists and medical investigators to the scene, which ultimately measured about 10 yards by 30 yards.
Some of the bodies that were identified as those of women who had a history of prostitution- and drug-related charges.
Some of the women had been on Albuquerque’s missing persons list since 2003.
http://valdostadailytimes.com/todays-top-stories/x1936219042/West-Mesa-Murder-case-focuses-on-Joplin-Mo-man


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (ALL 13 ID'd)
Post by: Lovinlife on December 11, 2010, 02:08:33 PM
I watched the two hour episode of "Somebody's Daughter" on Dateline last night.  It was very, very good.  You can watch it on line from here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3032600/

May these young women rest in peace and who ever is responsible be brought to justice.

Peace,
Lovin


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (ALL 13 ID'd)
Post by: Fanny Mae on December 11, 2010, 06:13:51 PM
I watched the two hour episode of "Somebody's Daughter" on Dateline last night.  It was very, very good.  You can watch it on line from here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3032600/

May these young women rest in peace and who ever is responsible be brought to justice.

Peace,
Lovin

Thanks LOVIN. I missed Dateline last night. I'm going to watch it online.  This has just been awful.  ::MonkeyNoNo::


Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (ALL 13 ID'd)
Post by: MuffyBee on February 09, 2014, 08:04:51 PM
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2014/02/09/five-years-after-mass-grave-discovered-albuquerque-killings-remain-unsolved/?cmpid=edpick&google_editors_picks=true
Five years after mass grave discovered, Albuquerque killings remain unsolved
February 9, 2014

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. –  The haunting images of 11 women stare back from the City of Albuquerque website as if to remind the world that five years after their bodies turned up in a mass grave on the outskirts of town, a killer likely remains on the loose.

It was early February 2009 when Christine Ross, walking her dog Ruca in a field atop a mesa, spied what turned out to be a human femur. By the time authorities were done excavating the 92-acre site -- once dubbed the biggest crime scene in American history – 11 sets of remains had been unearthed. The victims were all females between the ages of 15 and 32, and had a history of drug abuse, prostitution or both.

In the last half-decade, connections to other mass killings have been investigated and dismissed, and suspicion has focused on various drifters and criminals only to see them cleared. Authorities insist they won’t stop until they solve what is known locally as the “West Mesa murders.”
“This case will not be shelved or classified as a cold case, it will remain open until a prosecutable case can be presented to the district attorney’s office,” Cmdr. Anthony Montano, of the Albuquerque Police Violent Crimes Division, pledged to FoxNews.com.

The victims have all been linked to a stretch of the legendary Route 66, known as East Central Avenue where it passes through Albuquerque. The roadway is lined by seedy motels and fast-food joints, and known for the low-rent liaisons that take place in cars and rooms for rent. The names of the victims, who all disappeared between 2003 and 2005, are all but forgotten, except to the families and investigators who have endured the painstaking process of sifting through more than a thousand tips that eventually dwindled.

Montano wants to keep his department’s biggest unsolved crime in the forefront of people’s minds, knowing that his best chance for a break will come from a tipster. Someone who either heard or saw something involving the red dirt mesa, which also yielded the remains of a fetus.

“We are working [with local government officials] to erect a memorial site in honor of the victims,” Montano said.

Montano made it a point to reach out to the families of victims last week to provide updates on the investigation, knowing the approaching fifth-year anniversary of the mass grave’s discovery would be on their minds. All but three of the victims' families attended.

“They appeared to walk away from the meeting with a greater understanding of our investigation and were genuinely appreciative for bringing all of them together,” Montano said.

One mother still seeking answers and justice is Diana Wilhelm. Her daughter, Cinnamon Elks, was 32 when she disappeared. She said her grief dates back another five years, to when her troubled daughter disappeared.

“I know it’s the five-year anniversary, but this has been a much longer road for us,” Wilhelm told KRQE.
 ::snipping3::
The case continues to shock the residents of Albuquerque, a relatively peaceful and safe city of just over half a million people. But women like those found on the mesa have long been easy targets for serial killers and gangs. Just three hours south, in Juarez, the unearthing of more than 600 women over a 10-year span made headlines. Montano says there is no connection whatsoever between the Albuquerque case and the Juarez femicide.

“Unfortunately these types of cases -- similar backgrounds -- are sometimes more common than we would like to believe," Montano said. “When it comes to this type of victimization it doesn’t matter where it happens, it is what is available to the perpetrator and all circumstances vary.”

A study by Purdue University researchers found that serial murders have declined, but when they do occur, victims are increasingly likely to be prostitutes. A year after the bodies at West Mesa were found, a similar mass grave containing the remains of six women was discovered 2,000 miles away on Long Island, N.Y.  Authorities probed a possible connection between the Albuquerque case and what became known as New York's “Gilgo Beach Murders,” but determined there is no connection.
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Title: Re: Albuquerque's Murder Mystery...body count 13 / New Mexico (ALL 13 ID'd)
Post by: MuffyBee on February 09, 2014, 08:17:57 PM
Although it's been determined the West Mesa Murders and the Gilgo Beach Murders aren't connected, here is the link to the Gilgo Beach Murders thread at SM, for those interested in reading about it:

http://scaredmonkeys.net/index.php?board=149.0
Re: BODY COUNT 11 (1 child) on Long Island beaches NY (6 ID'd)