Cellphone video shows woman saying she is lost
Tuesday, April 29, 2014
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A woman whose body was found on a New Mexico mesa left behind a cellphone video explaining she was lost, authorities said.
Authorities suspect the remains were those of Brenda Salas, a 27-year-old Bernalillo resident who disappeared in June 2012 following a fight with her boyfriend.
“There’s enough evidence to suggest that she had been lost, and lost for a couple of days,” Sandoval County Sheriff Doug Wood said.
Salas was last seen at a Wal-Mart in nearby Rio Rancho wearing a gray Winnie the Pooh sweatshirt, blue jeans and Sketcher shoes.
Two weeks after she vanished, her abandoned car was discovered stuck in the sand on a remote dirt road.
For nearly two years, her disappearance baffled investigators who had combed a wide stretch of desert but found few clues.
A family discovered the remains Sunday while fossil hunting on West Mesa, a desert area near Albuquerque. Close to the remains were clothes, keys and the cellphone with the video, which has not been released.
Woods said in the video the woman talks about her relationship with her boyfriend. “It’s sad. Very sad,” Wood said.
Police believe someone tried to dial 911 from the phone, but the isolated area has no cell service.
DNA tests and dental records could take as long as two months, authorities said. “Until then, we can’t conclusively say it’s her,” Wood said.
Wood said investigators will show the woman’s family the message after they’ve processed the video and other evidence.
The medical examiner is investigating the cause of death.
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