Created: 04/25/2014 10:19 PM
By: Caleb James, KOB Eyewitness News 4
Police say they're looking into the possibility that the remains of a decomposed body found on a mesa northwest of Rio Rancho may belong to a missing woman named Brenda Salas.
Salas disappeared in 2012. Her car was later found on a mesa about five miles from where the remains were discovered.
The man who found the remains talks about his discovery.
Mike Zeyen and his daughters Nina and Jace spend a lot of time exploring the mesas northwest of Rio Rancho with their dog Billy Jean, looking for fossils.
On Sunday, the whole family was exploring a remote ravine when they came across something.
"Came across this hill and my wife says, 'Oh, there's a bunch of bones down here' and then she looks at me and says, 'and a shoe.' That's when we kinda knew something was going on," Mike said.
Mike says those bones were scattered across the dirt near a rancher's fence. He knew right away it was a crime scene and told his family they needed to get police.
Rio rancho police and Sandoval County deputies are investigating the possibility those remains could be Brenda Salas. The 27-year-old went missing in 2012.
Her car was found soon after her disappearance on the mesa about five miles from where Mike found those bones.
Nearby, he also found a cell phone -- a key piece of the puzzle for investigators who are trying to figure out if it belonged to Salas or someone else.
The original missing persons flyer made for Brenda Salas said she was last seen with her boyfriend, Tim Vialpando.
He's been serving time in the Valencia county jail on other charges since December.
Police have not named him, or anyone else, as a person of interest in this case.