Missing woman's company sued over $700K loan
FARMINGTON — An oil and gas company whose co-owner went missing last November is being sued over hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid loans.
Vectra Bank has sued Holcomb Oil and Gas Co. over an unpaid loan totaling $712,233.
On Nov. 25, attorneys for the plaintiff filed the lawsuit in the Eleventh Judicial District Court in Aztec.
The lawsuit names the missing woman, Sharron Holcomb, and William J. Holcomb, and Holcomb Oil and Gas Company as defendants.
Sharron Holcomb went missing on Nov. 18, 2014. Law enforcement officials still hold out hope that the 64-year-old will be found alive.
Holcomb was last seen at approximately 1 p.m. Nov. 18 near her home at No. 9 County Road 4464. It is believed that she left the house on foot and headed east on U.S. Highway 64 toward the Manzanares Canyon area.
However, any connection between Sharron Holcomb's disappearance and the unpaid loan remain unclear.
On July 13, 2007, the Holcombs took out a business loan for $500,000, according to court documents. The Holcombs amended the note nine times between 2008 and 2015, largely to renew and extend the loan's maturity dates.
On the eighth change in terms of the loan on Jan. 27, 2014, the Holcombs increased the principal amount of the loan to $700,000.
The Holcombs also sought and received an additional $121,000 loan on Dec. 7, 2007.
To secure the loan, the Holcombs put up their business' property as security on Dec. 7, 2007, which under the defaulted loan renders the property subject to foreclosure, according to the lawsuit. The small independent oil and gas company is located near downtown Farmington at 512 W. Arrington Ave.
Detective Lt. Kyle Lincoln of the San Juan County Sheriff's Office said the missing person case remains active and open.
"She’s still a missing person," Lincoln said. "We have no leads at this point."
A note written by Sharron Holcomb found at her Blanco home after she disappeared did not reference money trouble or the debt, Lincoln said.
"It was a pretty vague note," Lincoln said. "It didn’t say, 'I’m going to kill myself.' It was more, an 'I’m sorry' kind of note."
Sharron Holcomb is 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs 130 pounds. She has red hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing brown corduroy pants and a brown turtleneck, according to The Daily Times archives.
The Holcomb family declined to comment on the ongoing search or the lawsuit.
Oil and gas companies that have taken on debt suffer the most during stretches of low commodities prices, and the current stretch has lasted for an extended period hurting even otherwise financially stable companies operating in the San Juan Basin, said Wally Drangmeister, vice president and spokesman for the New Mexico Oil and Gas Association.
"Generally speaking, the only time that oil and gas producing companies take on debt is to drill new wells or secure leases to do so," Drangmeister said."Natural gas is under $2 ... The parties with the most debt are at the most risk, all things being equal. Any debt during a downturn is really problematic from the business point of view."
James Fenton is the business editor of The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4621.
Anyone with information regarding Sharron Holcolm can contact Senior Det. Mike Farni at the San Juan County Sheriff's Office at 505-334-6107 or San Juan County Communication Authority at 505-334-6622.