ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Friends and family of Mary Han, a high-profile Albuquerque attorney found dead inside her home in November 2010, have always maintained she was murdered, even though medical investigators and police ruled her death a suicide. But News 13 has obtained a document, filed by an APD officer who was at the scene two years ago, that alleges it was a staged murder.
Han, 53, was a civil rights attorney who often went after bad cops.
She was found in her North Valley home dead inside her BMW in a closed garage. Her feet were up on the dash and investigators said the house smelled of carbon monoxide. But detectives also noted her car was not running.
Han's family said she was not suicidal and her jewelry was missing. They said police may have been biased and did not follow up on possible signs of foul play.
APD was criticized because of its response at the scene. An inordinate number of officers and brass flocked to the scene and there are accusations that officers were making jokes. One officer was punished for posting on the Internet that there's "a special place in hell for her."
"With as much personnel that showed up at that scene as reflected as if there had been a shooting, I thought that it was odd," said Tom Grover, a former APD officer who resigned last December.
He is now a UNM law student.
Grover, who was a good friend of Han, was one of the first at the scene. He said the day after Han's death, he received a chilling call from an APD lieutenant.
"(The lieutenant) had overheard discussions with detectives at SID commenting that the scene involving Mary Han was a staged murder, that it was a homicide," said Grover.
The lieutenant said it wasn't suicide and recalled detectives saying Han was "clearly taken out," according to Grover's report.
"People had said specifically that they needed to do a full toxicology screen on her body, not just a standard battery for poisons but a full blown spectrum of poisons and then also to do a careful review of any indications of struggle in her neck and facial area," said Grover.
Grover filed a supplemental report with APD records, which was time-stamped about a week after Han's death. But the report is nowhere to be found in Han's case file.
"I raised the flag of something is wrong here, and this really needs to be processed with some objectivity and that concern just got cast aside," said Grover.
An APD spokesperson confirmed the report is missing in the current file, but police are unsure if the report was either mistakenly not added to the file or if the document was never submitted to records in the first place.
Police said it will do a full "top to bottom" search to try to locate the report.
Han's family is suing APD in civil court, claiming the department botched the case.
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