Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Probe of fatal APD shooting continues

Gunfire followed car, foot pursuit

* Executive Producer: Melissa Dosher
* Web Producer: Bill Diven

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - One man is dead, another gone from the scene and an Albuquerque police officer is on leave.

The officer fatally shot Andrew Lopez, 19 early Sunday morning after he led Albuquerque police officers on a high-speed car chase lasting 11 minutes.

Police said Lopez had a gun.

After stopping near 51st Street and Rincon Road NW, Lopez and his unidentified passenger jumped out and ran away. Officers caught up to Lopez in a dark area.

Lopez then turned on one of the officers in an aggressive manner with something in his hand, according to Albuquerque Police Department spokesman John Walsh

The officer fired shots in response.

Police are still looking for Lopez's passenger and the gun they believe was in the car.

The officer who fired the shots has been identified as Justin Montgomery, 28, who has been with APD for 2 1/2 years.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Another Youth Murdered by APD

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Police ID Man Killed by Officer

By Jeff Proctor, Albuquerque Journal Staff Writer

Police have identified the man fatally shot by an officer after an 11-minute pursuit through southwest Albuquerque early Sunday as Andrew Lopez, a 19-year-old suspected gang member with a felony warrant out for his arrest.
Albuquerque Police Department Officer Justin Montgomery, a 28-year-old just more than two years out of the academy, shot Lopez shortly after 3 a.m. after he and other officers backed Lopez into a corner, police spokesman John Walsh said.
Lopez "turned in an aggressive manner with an object in his hand" and was shot an undetermined number of times, Walsh said.
An "extensive search" of the area near the intersection of 51st and Rincon NW turned up only a silver-colored cell phone, he said. No weapon has been found.
A second man, who had been a passenger in Lopez's vehicle when police began to follow it, managed to get away and was still at large late Monday, Walsh said. He was around the same age as Lopez and was wearing dark clothing.
Police began following the vehicle, a beige 1980s-model two-door sedan, because it was driving with no lights on, he said. There had been calls of shots fired in the area that matched up with the vehicle Lopez was driving.
Officers pursued the vehicle for nearly 11 minutes, Walsh said, and, at one point, Lopez stuck his hand out the window with "an object officers believed to be a weapon."
The vehicle began to slow down as it approached 51st, and before it had come to a stop, the passenger bailed out and fled on foot, he said. The vehicle then came to a halt, Lopez got out and ran in the other direction.
He ran down a "darkened area," Walsh said and was eventually boxed into a corner by Montgomery and other officers. That's when Lopez turned around and was shot.
Police have been searching the several-mile area the vehicle and foot pursuits covered for weapons and witnesses, he said. So far, no weapon has been found, but several possible witnesses and acquaintances of Lopez have been interviewed.
Lopez had a felony warrant out for his arrest on drug and aggravated battery charges, according to court records.
Montgomery is on standard paid 72-hour leave while APD, the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Department, State Police, the District Attorney's Office and the Office of the Medical Investigator complete their investigation, Walsh said.