Oct. 3—Santa Fe police have identified the victim of a recent homicide as Aaron Garcia, 50, of Santo Domingo Pueblo.
Officers found Garcia’s body the evening of Sept. 22 under a bridge near the N.M. 599 Rail Runner Express commuter train station at the southwestern edge of the city and opened a homicide investigation, noting he appeared to have suffered “blunt force trauma” to his head, the police department said in a news release Tuesday.
The investigation into Garcia’s death is ongoing, the release states.
Capt. Aaron Ortiz said Garcia’s body was found at the site of a homeless encampment.
Santiago Bryant of Santa Fe, who said he considered Garcia a close friend, would often encounter Garcia at the Allsup’s gas station near the Rail Runner station and would give him rides around town. Garcia had been living at a nearby encampment for several years, Bryant said.
Garcia would gather bundles of sage from around town and from the mountains to sell to people, along with a blessing, his friend said.
He would often brighten Bryant’s day by greeting him at Allsup’s, Bryant added, and “meant a lot to a lot of people.”
“I always promised him that I would get him a house or something, and that day never came,” Bryant said. “We’re going to be missing a good person.”
Garcia’s death is the sixth homicide recorded by Santa Fe police in 2023.
Investigators encourage anyone with information regarding Garcia’s death to contact Detective Jill Feaster at 505-955-5281 and to submit any photos or videos from the incident to the department’s online evidence portal.