FBI Albuquerque Division public affairs officer Frank Fisher speaks at Wednesday’s press conference at the Rio County Commissioners Chambers in Espanola. Photo by Maire O’Neill/losalamosreporter.com
Rio Arriba County Sheriff James Lujan, left, and FBI Special Agent In Charge James Langenburg announce that Renezmae Calzada has been found. Photo by Maire O’Neill/losalamosreporter.com
BY MAIRE O’NEILL
Rio Arriba County Sheriff James Lujan announced in a press conference at 2 p.m. Wednesday that the remains of five-year old Renezmae Calzada had been found. He said the child who was missing since Sunday was found through the assistance of the Albuquerque Police Department, the FBI and many other agencies and community members that had come forward to assist.
“It is with deep sadness that we’re announcing that she has been located. We ask that the media and people honor the family and give them room to grieve and get through this. I ask that everyone give their prayers to the family and to Renezmae,” he said, flanked by law enforcement personnel from several agencies.
FBI Albuquerque Division Special Agent in Charge James Langenburg said it was with a very heavy heart that he stood there.
“The FBI, the law enforcement community as well as the Espanola community want to offer our condolences to Renezmae’s family during their time of grief. I want to thank all the law enforcement partners and the Espanola community for coming forward the last couple of days, working with law enforcement, providing tips and leading us into a direction which assisted us with locating Renezmae,” he said.
Langenburg listed the agencies who had worked together on the case since Sunday evening. They are:
Rio Arriba County Sheriff’s Office
New Mexico State Police
Espanola Police Department
Espanola Public Schools
Espanola Fire Department
Santa Clara Police Department
The Pueblo of Pojoaque Tribal Police Department
Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office
Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office
New Mexico Corrections Department
First Judicial District Attorney’s Office
United States Attorney’s Office
New Mexico Probation and Parole
Albuquerque Police Department
New Mexico Department of Game and Fish
Bureau of Land Management
Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo
Rio Arriba County Sheriff’s Chaplain Corp
The American Red Cross
Santa Clara Tribal Gov. Michael Chavarria
“As you can see we worked together as a team in professional partnership during the last few days but I can assure you, this investigation has not stopped. We will continue to work until we can identify the responsible party for Renezmae,” Langenburg said.
He asked that people respect the privacy of Remezmae’s family and respect the tribal area around the Santa Clara Pueblo.
“I just wanted to say thank you again to the Espanola community for assisting us as we go through this investigation. We completed approximately 175 to 200 interviews. We searched within a half mile of both the mother’s residence and the stepfather’s residence. We searched two miles along the Rio Grande river looking for Renezmae and we have more than 100 special agents of the FBI as well as law enforcement personnel from state, local and tribal who assisted us over the last several days,” he said. “Today is about Renezmae. We’re not going to answer any questions while the investigation is moving forward. That will be at a later date. Today is for the mourning of Renezmae and about offering our condolences as a community to the family.”
A vigil was scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at the Espanola Plaza.
When asked about an alleged suspect who had been named by media Tuesday, FBI public affairs officer Frank Fisher said the FBI doesn’t talk about those aspects of the investigation until someone has been charged.
Fisher confirmed that Renezmae’s body was found at around 11:35 a.m. in the Rio Grande River by Santa Clara Pueblo. He said the investigation is ongoing and concluded by saying, “this is not over”.