Valdez missing persons case gets fresh look

Editor’s Note: This is a fascinating, as well as tragic case involving many facets that are not discussed here. It’s a real who-done-it. It’s a mystery that deserves to be solved. While we may never know what happened to Hubert Valdez, the reopening of this cold case may yield some clues as to his disappearance. Persons are encouraged to come forward with any information that could help law enforcement officials solve the case. His family deserves that much.
The Culberson County Sheriff’s Office, in conjunction with the Texas Rangers investigative unit, have reopened a cold case involving the disappearance of Hubert Valdez, a Van Horn resident who was 28 years old at the time of his disappearance in 2011.

According to Sheriff Oscar E. Carrillo the case needed to be reopened, evidence re-evaluated and witnesses re-interviewed.  Mr. Valdez has been missing since April 29, 2003 and he has been on the Texas Dept. of Public Safety Missing Persons Clearing House website.   

Rangers have been conducting interviews in Van Horn and are ready to ask the public for assistance.  The public is encouraged to contact investigators with any information that may assist investigators.  Our investigators welcome any information even if it may appear to be trivial. The information and its provider are kept confidential and a cash reward similar to Crime Stoppers is available.     

Mr. Valdez was last seen at approximately 2 a.m. leaving Gilbert’s Lounge in the vicinity of the 300 block of E. Broadway in Van Horn. His vehicle was located the same day in an open lot near the intersection of Mesquite St. and Frontage Rd.  He was wearing a white T-shirt, black jeans, black air sole athletic shoes, and baseball cap.

Since the disappearance in 2003, one witness has since died, as well as two persons of interest, said Mr. Carrillo. He added that he, along with other law enforcement agencies, are trying to arrange an interview for another person of interest, Simon Flores Ornelas (also known as “Chungo”). Mr. Ornelas is currently serving time in a Juárez prison.

Mr. Ornelas absconded to Mexico after being convicted on sexual molestation charges in 2008. He was sentenced to 189 years in prison. 

If you have any information on this case, please contact:  Texas Ranger Royal McMullen at (915) 549-3040 or Sheriff Oscar E. Carrillo  at (432) 284-1074.  Any information provided will be confidential.