FBI: Two women, three children found dead on Santa Ana Pueblo

J.R. Oppenheim, Kasia Gregorczyk and Brittany Costello
January 11, 2017 02:42 PM

The FBI determined the body of a female found on the Santa Ana Pueblo is, in fact, one of the two sisters reported missing since Thursday, and it appears both sisters and the three children have been found dead.


FBI Media Coordinator Frank Fisher said agents identified the woman as Leticia George. The bodies recovered are connected to the women and children in the Albuquerque Police Department’s missing persons bulletin, Fisher said.

The Office of the Medical Investigator will make the final determination on the identities of those recovered on the pueblo, Fisher said.

Agents do not believe foul play was involved, and the FBI does not suspect another party at this time. The causes of death are pending autopsies, and the FBI is continuing the investigation.

Click here to watch Joy Wang's report on KOB Eyewitness News 4 at 10

Several agencies assisted the FBI, including U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, Albuquerque Police Department, New Mexico State Police, Santa Ana Police and Conservation Departments, Jemez Pueblo Police Department, Navajo Nation Criminal Investigation Section and Bernalillo County Sheriff's Office.

Vanessa George, Leticia George and their three children went missing last Thursday, and it was initially believed they drove in a Toyota Tundra with New Mexico license plate number 578 SNY. KOB’s Chopper 4 flew over what appeared to be a similar vehicle Monday afternoon as FBI agents searched the area.

FBI activity heightened on the pueblo Monday night after the children’s bodies were found. Several Albuquerque Police Department vehicles exited the Santa Ana Pueblo throughout the day Tuesday, leaving with four-wheelers in tow. APD has aided the FBI in the investigation, but the FBI serves as the lead agency involved.

A cousin told KOB-TV that Vanessa George was recently concerned about her safety and that of her children. Albuquerque police say she was a victim of domestic violence, and they arrested Murphy Becenti, her estranged boyfriend and the father of her children.

However, the indication from the FBI that foul play is not a factor means Becenti is not a suspect.

KOB talked to a family friend of the George sisters. Darren Jim worked with their father for more than 14 years. He said the family is extremely loving and kind. They all grew up in Red Valley.

This tragedy is extremely difficult to wrap their minds around, Jim said.

“I talked to him, and he sounded like he was kind of strong, though,” he said. “And I just told him that if he needed anything that we were here for him and that we're always in our thoughts and prayers.”

The family has set up a GoFundMe account for the George family.


J.R. Oppenheim, Kasia Gregorczyk and Brittany Costello

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved



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