‘We Need to Get Her Home’

Two weeks after local woman goes missing, family is desperate for answers

By Justin Franz
Alex Nicole Beltran. Photo Courtesy of the Flathead County Sheriff's Office.

At approximately 11 p.m. on July 16, Alex Nicole Beltran, a 23-year-old Whitefish woman who had spent the day with her friends in Kalispell, got into her green 1998 Toyota RAV4 and headed north.

It was the last time any of Beltran’s friends saw her.

Two weeks after Beltran went missing, local law enforcement is still trying to find the woman, and her friends and family are growing desperate for answers. Family members have spent much of the last week hanging missing posters around the valley and have hired a private investigator to lead their own search for Beltran.

“We’re desperate,” said Beltran’s husband, 23-year-old Alfredo Becerra. “We need to get her home.”

Flathead County Sheriff Chuck Curry said that his detectives are tirelessly tracking down information about Beltran and have conducted numerous interviews with people who saw her in the days and hours before she went missing. Curry said detectives have found no evidence to suggest foul play in Beltran’s disappearance, but they also haven’t ruled it out either.

“We’re running down every lead we’ve gotten, but so far no new information has developed,” Curry said.

Curry said that they have determined Beltran had spent most of July 16 in the Kalispell area drinking with friends. She left a residence on the west side of Kalispell late that night bound for her parents’ home in Happy Valley but never arrived. Her family reported her missing on July 19. Law enforcement combed numerous routes Beltran could have taken home but so far have found no evidence of her or her car. There has also been no activity on her cell phone or her financial accounts.

Beltran works as a certified nursing assistant and grew up in Southern California. She moved to the Flathead Valley two years ago to be closer to her father.

“She came up here to visit her dad and just loved the area,” said her aunt, Gidget Giannola, who lives in Las Vegas and has been in the valley for a week helping look for Beltran.

Giannola said Beltran loves animals — she has a dog and a cat — and Harry Potter. Beltran and Giannola had been planning to attend LeakyCon, an annual Harry Potter fan convention, in Dallas in August.

Becerra, Beltran’s husband of over a year, said his wife is one of the happiest people he knows and that she would never leave her friends and family without telling them.

Becerra currently lives in California and was saving money to move to Montana to be closer to Beltran. He said he regularly talks to his wife every day and that the last two weeks have been torture.

“Every single person who has ever met her just falls in love with her instantly,” he said. “She’s such a positive person. She always has a huge grin on her face.”

Family members said that while they appreciate the work law enforcement has put into the case, they know authorities are also focused on other cases as well. Because of that, the family has hired its own private investigator to try to dig up leads in Beltran’s disappearance. Giannola said it’s nearly impossible to sit at home and not be proactive.

“It’s just so hard to sit still; it’s so hard to think about what could be happening to her,” she said. “That’s why we’re putting up posters everywhere. It brings us peace because it feels like we’re doing something.”

Anyone with information about Beltran’s possible whereabouts is encouraged to call the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office at (406) 758-5585.