NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Law enforcement agencies and community activists have worked to highlight the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous persons across New Mexico. Now, federal authorities have made one of the first convictions in connection to those efforts.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) publishes a list of Native Americans confirmed missing throughout New Mexico and the Navajo Nation. On August 15, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico Alexander M.M. Uballez announced that his office is working on prosecuting a man allegedly tied to a person on the FBI’s list.
The victim, listed as a John Doe 2, made it onto the FBI’s list of missing Native Americans after his family reported his disappearance. Now, federal prosecutors say 30-year-old Shilo Aaron Oldrock, from the Spirit Lake Sioux Tribe in the Dakotas, has pled guilty to second-degree murder and voluntary manslaughter.
According to the guilty plea filed in federal court, Oldrock admits to killing a victim listed as John Doe 1 within the exterior boundaries of the Navajo Nation. The plea claimed Oldrock killed John Doe 1 to cover up John Doe 2’s murder.
Prosecutor Uballez said that there’s a wide range of reasons someone might end up on the FBI’s list of missing Native persons. Limited resources at law enforcement and prosecution departments present an ongoing challenge to finding those missing, he says.
Still, Uballez says just having that list of missing people is a big help.
“It does help us in coordinating across many different agencies across the state and across all of the Navajo Nation,” Uballez told KRQE News 13. “Being able to share information transparently both among law enforcement and with the public, who is a critical partner here, has been essential.”
The FBI’s full list of missing and wanted people can be found online. The list of missing Native Americans in New Mexico and the Navajo Nation can be found here. You can report any tips to the FBI at this link.