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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Nearly three decades since a 19-year-old woman disappeared from her small New Mexico town, her family with the help of a former friend and filmmaker are renewing the search for answers.

Tara Calico disappeared from Belen in September 1988, and her case has remained unsolved since. With the help of Calico’s family, filmmaker Melinda Esquibel began a new investigation into case, KRQE-TV reported ( ) last week.

Esquibel, who said she became friends with Calico on a high school band trip, started examining the case with a documentary film project. That initial examination turned into an investigation after finding the case files in disorder, she said.

Esquibel said progress has been made on the case, and they’re unearthing information that has been hidden for years. The information they are gathering is also being shared with Valencia County Sheriff’s Department investigators. The sheriff’s department has remained the lead law enforcement agency on the case. A new detective was recently appointed to the investigation.

While much of the information uncovered about the case cannot be released as it’s an ongoing investigation, Esquibel has started the podcast “Vanished: The Tara Calico Story” to share some of what they are learning.


This story has been corrected to say the title of the documentary about the case is “Vanished: The Tara Calico Story,” not “Vanished: The Tara Calico Investigation.”


Information from: KRQE-TV,