Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Details of Disappearance
Mathews was last seen by his son-in-law about 6:15 p.m. Feb. 21, 2000, apparently on his way back to his home about five miles north of Las Vegas. On February 22 a friend who had worked with Mathews told State Police that he had disappeared. Mathews' vehicle was parked near his house; the car was unlocked and the keys were in the ignition. Mathews' cellular phone was also inside the vehicle. The doors to Mathews' house and business were unlocked, which was unusual. Police looked through the residence and found lights on and a radio playing. Police have found no evidence of foul play.
Mathews was a businessman in the Las Vegas area in 2000. He did not have any travel plans at the time of his disappearance. Mathews' relatives told police that they were concerned because Mathews, owner of a Las Vegas plumbing business, did not appear in court for a hearing in his pending divorce. A judge had ordered the couple to split up their property or he would do it for them. State Police had been called out to the property a few times in recent years, primarily over confrontations between Mathews and his son and domestic problems because of the divorce. No one was arrested during the confrontations and no one was injured.
Mathews' family members told authorities that it is uncharacteristic of him to leave without warning. Mathews traveled to Mexico and out of state, but he rarely traveled alone. He had equipment at a gold mine owned by business friends in Mexico but would only go there with someone who was fluent in Spanish.
Mathews' credit cards have not been used and no activity is recorded on his bank accounts since he has been gone. Family members told police that Mathews often carried a lot of cash with him and that the day he seems to have disappeared he had $20,000 in cash with him.
State Police and officers from the state Game and Fish Department conducted a ground search of the surrounding property and a crime-scene team went through the house. A State Police helicopter searched the property from the air for an hour. Police followed a tip that Mathews was buried at his place of business, but found evidence that suggested it was not true.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
San Miguel County Sheriff's Office
Sheriff Chris Majar
San Miguel County Sheriff's Office - New Mexico