Disappearance In Dulce: The Case Of Melissa Montoya

42-year-old Melissa Montoya lived in Dulce, New Mexico, within the Jicarilla Apache Nation. Though she was a quiet woman, there was a profound strength about Melissa. But beneath the surface, she harbored a dark secret – she was the victim of domestic violence. In the days before her disappearance, Melissa warned her family that if something bad happened to her, it was her boyfriend. On March 17th, 2001, Melissa’s words came true, and she was never seen again.

Attorney Darlene Gomez represents Melissa’s family. She discusses the facts of her disappearance and a breakthrough development that could potentially mean answers in the case. Later, she sheds light on the unique obstacles that hinder justice in the cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women.

Darlene Gomez has practiced law for over 21 years and specializes in both Indian Law and Complex Family Law. She shares her legal expertise and platform to advocate for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women & Relatives (MMIWR).

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