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Mystery shrouds New Mexico jailer’s civil rights-era murder

January 15, 2018

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The murder of a Hispanic jailer in New Mexico in 1968 — a year of unrest in the United States — has long divided residents, scholars and civil rights advocates.

Assailants abducted Eulogio (ee-loh-JEE-oh) Salazar in front of his home in the rural community of Tierra Amarilla, and left his body in a ravine.

The murder came as Salazar was preparing to testify against Hispanic-rights activist Reies Lopez Tijerina and his followers. The group was accused of leading an armed raid of the Tierra Amarilla Courthouse six months earlier.

Tijerina long denied any role in Salazar’s murder.

Some scholars say Salazar may have been a casualty of overzealous law enforcement working to dismantle the influence of Mexican-American civil rights groups.

The 50-year-old case remains unsolved after two investigations.