Senate OK missing persons bill

·1 min read

Jan. 28—SANTA FE — A proposal to establish an annual event dedicated to helping the families of missing persons in New Mexico won Senate approval 34-0 on Friday, sending it to the House.

The legislation, Senate Bill 13, would bring government agencies together to help families file missing-person reports, submit DNA records and meet with investigators.

Senate Majority Whip Linda Lopez, an Albuquerque Democrat and co-sponsor of the proposal, said the event would be vital in a state that leads the nation for the number of cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women.

"There's so much more we have to do," Lopez said.

The proposal would create a Missing in New Mexico Event organized each year by the state Department of Public Safety.

The department would be directed to maintain a clearinghouse with information on missing persons to help law enforcement and others.

Before reaching the governor, the bill must also win approval in the House.