Ernestine Romero, the popular New Mexico singer, was found shot dead alongside her husband, Jessie Saucedo. Saucedo, 32, is believed to killed his wife and then taken his own life. The shooting took place in Santa Fe on the afternoon of July 11. Romero was 32 years old. She was killed the day after her birthday.
The Santa Fe Police Department made the tragic announcement in a July 12 statement. The statement said that Romero was found with two gunshot wounds in her chest in the passenger seat of a BMW sports utility vehicle. Saucedo was sat next to Romero. He was found dead with a single gunshot wound to the head. The gun was found in the car.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Ernestine Romero Had Been Living Apart From Her Husband for Several Weeks Before the Shooting
The police said that Romero and her husband had been estranged for several weeks prior to the shooting. The press release also identified Romero as being the famed local singer who performed under her maiden name. The press release added, “This tragic, heartbreaking incident has shaken our community and personally affected many.”
In addition to her singing career, Romero also worked in the state government’s school budget and finance office. Police said that the bodies were found close to the Jerry Apodaca Education Building in the downtown area of the city.
2. Romero Released Her First Album at the Age of 11
According to an online bio, Romero is a native of Pojoaque, New Mexico. The prolific singer released her first album at the age of 11.
In her teenage years, Romero was the two-time winner of the Teen Singing Competition in Los Angeles and was once voted as one of Tejano’s Top Twenty Up and Coming Artists. Among her most famous songs is a duet with two-time Grammy Award winner Ruben Ramos in a song titled, “El Gato Negro.”
3. Romero & Saucedo Had Been Dating Since 2007 & Were Married in 2017
Romero and her husband first got together in 2007 and were wed in Cabo San Lucas in Mexico in July 2017. Prior to their wedding, Romero had told Tejano Nation about her relationship with Saucedo saying, “I’ve been very blessed to have someone who really supports the music and let’s me do what I love to do and that’s being on stage and traveling all over the place and performing.”
A post on Romero’s Facebook showed that she most recently performed at a July 4 celebration.
4. New Mexico’s Governor Has Released a Statement of Grief in Relation to Romero’s Tragic Death
Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham released a statement of grief following Romero’s death saying, “Today we experienced a horrific tragedy in Santa Fe. My heart is broken for the family and loved ones of the state employee who was tragically and violently taken from us too soon. I am grateful to Santa Fe law enforcement for their quick response and I want every state employee to know that we are here to support you through this trying time.”
5. Romero’s Biggest Influence Was Selena
Speaking to KOB, Romero’s friend, Mark Ortiz said that the slain singer was “fireworks on stage, I mean Selena was her biggest influence.”
Texas-born singing superstar Selena was 23 years old when she too was shot dead in March 1995. The president of Selena’s fan club, Yolanda Saldivar, was later sentenced to 30 years in prison for first-degree murder in relation to the shooting.
READ NEXT: Teenage Porn Star Controversy Rocks California High School