FBI is reviewing Hermiston missing person case

By on Tuesday, September 19th, 2023 in Columbia Basin News More Top Stories

HERMISTON – The Hermiston Police Department asked the FBI to review its investigation into the disappearance of Graciela Garcia who has been missing since 2019. Police Chief Jason Edmiston said that was the obvious agency to ask since many of the detectives’ work has gone across multiple states. He says that request, which was made in late July, should not be taken as a surrender.

“Just because we’ve asked the FBI to take a look at this doesn’t mean we’re kicking the can down the road,” he said. “We’re going to continue to investigate this.”

Edmiston said the FBI agreed to look at the case, but has not indicated when it will be finished. Meanwhile, the case came back into the news recently when Moises Garcia (Graciela’s brother) allegedly shot and critically wounded her husband, Cuauthemoc Romero.

Romero underwent surgery at a Portland critical care center Sunday where he’s being treated for wounds to his abdomen and his shoulder.

Edmiston said people who have criticized investigators don’t fully understand what the police must prove in order to arrest someone for a crime.

“Investigators collect evidence and information, and they don’t assume what that evidence and information may be saying,” he said. “It’s critical for investigators to be unbiased when they are collecting information and evidence and when it comes to sitting down and interviewing. The keyboard warriors in social media land really have no direct information about an investigation or, frankly, about the challenges law enforcement faces with various case law in Oregon.”

This article was edited to add that the request to the FBI was made in late July. We regret the omission.