LAS VEGAS, N.M. — June 17, 2020, the New Mexico State Police Cold Case Unit arrested Sharise Herrera, 32, of Las Vegas, N.M., on charges stemming from the disappearance of Henry Duran in 2017.
This arrest follows a three-year investigation that started in March of 2017 when Duran was reported missing to the New Mexico State Police Uniform Bureau in Las Vegas.
In late July of 2018, the case turned cold after months of investigation with no new leads.
NMSP Investigations Bureau Agents got a break in the case in mid-December of 2018 when they received information Herrera and her boyfriend Bernardino “Bernie” Baca had burnt and disposed of the remains of Henry Duran near the San Geronimo Cemetery in San Miguel County.
NMSP Investigations Bureau Agents executed a search warrant in the area near San Geronimo Cemetery, where they found black trash bags containing ashes and human bones including a human jawbone with a tooth in it.
The remains were sent to the Office of the Medical Investigator in hopes of having them identified. In February of 2019 agents received a report from the Office of the Medical Investigator that concluded, based on dental records, the remains found were believed to be, with high confidence, that of Duran.
NMSP Investigations Bureau Agents interviewed Herrera who told them Baca had shot Duran outside their residence at 62 North Road in Las Vegas. Baca and another individual identified only as “Tone” then burned Duran’s remains in a pit over the next few weeks.
Once the burning was complete Herrera and Baca placed the remains in black trash bags, loaded them into Baca’s truck and disposed of them near the San Geronimo Cemetery and in the Gallinas River.
Herrera was booked into the San Miguel Detention Center charged with Tampering with Evidence (2 counts), Conspiracy to Tamper with Evidence (2 counts), and Harboring or Aiding a Felon. Baca is in prison on unrelated charges; however, State Police anticipates filing charges against him as the investigation continues.
This case remains under investigation by the New Mexico State Police Cold Case Unit with assistance from the New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau and Crime Scene Team. More information will be released as it becomes available.