James Boyd, a 38-year-old homeless man with mental illness issues, was shot by the Albuquerque PD on Sunday, March 16 2014 after he became engaged in an hours-long standoff with officers who caught him illegally camping in the Sandia foothills.
APD released video footage taken from the helmetcam of an officer on the scene of the crime that depicts a cop opening fire on Boyd while his back was turned to the police. The clip has since been widely circulated online and the Carnalismo Brown Berets have also circulated the clip.
In the video, Boyd tells the police, “Don’t change up the agreement, I’m going to try to walk with you.” As he reaches for his belongings, however, an officer says “Do it” and a flash-bang device is fired at the suspect while a law enforcement dog is let loose. Boyd
remains standing a few yards from the police seemingly unaffected by the blast, but moments later, the police say, he reached for something that they believed to be a knife, prompting Officers Dominque Perez and Keith Sandy to fire a total of six shots into the man.
APD have been known to make this excuse up before, and even shot a young man dead while he was holding a plastic spork. Unfortunately the was no video of that incident.
As Boyd laid motionless on a rock with his face in a pool of blood, the police continued to bark orders at him before firing further rounds of non-lethal ammunition.
After APD released the video, New Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden Eden said that the video showed that the shooting is justified.
With regards to this month’s incident, Chief Eden said Boyd posed a
“direct threat” to his officers and cited Garner v. Tennessee, a Supreme
Court of the United States decision that found that the police can use
deadly force in certain circumstances.
Albuquerque police have shot more people than the New York Police Department since 2010, despite being one-sixteenth the size, and have been the subject of a Department of
Justice federal probe when the APD’s fatal shooting record was called
The findings from the DOJ Report can be found on www.brownberetsnewmexico.com