There are those who believe that one reason Pepita is still missing is that law enforcement does not put a priority on missing women of color, including native women.
Jolene Holgate, training and education director for the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women, says that cases involving missing women of color often suffer from a lack of help from law enforcement, especially as opposed to cases involving missing white women, such as the Gabby Petito case.
Referring to the Petito case, Holgate says, "If that same amount of energy and effort were put towards Pepita's case, I think the outcome would be the same. Why aren’t these agencies trauma-informed, providing the same resources towards these cases? Why don’t they feel the need to organize in the same way?"
A similar statement was made by Lynn Trujillo, cabinet secretary for the New Mexico Department of Indian Affairs: "Many families, on their own, spend their own money and take the time to investigate these cases. They continue to be a voice for their missing relative."