Although the bodies were found in 2009, by a dog who found a bone sticking out in the ground, it wasn’t till today that I heard about the West Mesa Bone Collector.
In Albuquerque, NM, police found a crime scene, of decomposed corpses that took them weeks to uncover. In the end, 11 women who had gone missing between 2001 and 2005 had finally been found.
The cause of their death? Homicidal violence determined the medical examiner.
This case, which the police officially call the 118th Street Homicides is still unsolved and whoever is responsible for the death of these women is not known.
Police state that very little evidence was found at the burial site, nothing to tie the victims together who were classified as prostitutes and drug users. A satellite photo shows the last body was buried in 2005.
An Albuquerque reporter believes there may be at least 7 more woman out there that are missing and may be victims of the same serial killer. Click here to see a list of missing in Albuquerque.
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.
“Albuquerqueans don’t relate to the victims; they think they’re just a bunch of hookers and drug addicts,” Gibson said. “Police budgets are stretched thin. There’s so little money, and there are so many crimes. Investigating a ten-year-old crime where the police think that the victims had it coming—there’s just no incentive for that.” Dirk Gibson, a professor at the University of New Mexico told Vice.
Regardless, Albuquerque Police Cmdr. Anthony Montano said that the case would not be shelved or classified as a cold case and a reward for $100,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for this crime has been offered.
And, Investigators would like to hear from women who were working the streets of Albuquerque between 2001 and 2005.
Joseph Blea—aka the “Mid-School Rapist” is a person of interest in these murders. Blea broke into several homes throughout the 80s and raped young girls between ages 13-15. He is also suspected of murdering a sex worker. He’s currently in prison.
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 (505) 768-2450. Crime Stoppers can be called at (505) 843-STOP. And remember you can leave any anonymous tips here.