Albuquerque brawl video raises questions about police presence

Local News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A brawl captured on camera lasted at least five minutes right off Central Avenue in downtown Albuquerque. There were no police in sight, but now police would like to know more about the guy at the center of it all.

Usually, it’s not hard to find an officer on Central at night, but when that fight was going on just a few feet away in this parking lot, there wasn’t any sign of police.

It was an all-out brawl. Women pummeling each other and a very large man even dragging and clocking one of them.

“That’s ridiculous,” said local Nich Ortega.

“No good at all,” said local Oscar Delao.

The fight looks like it happened in an open parking lot off Central and Third in downtown at night.

“This is kind of scary to me,” said Delao.

People who KRQE News 13 showed the video to are not only shocked about the violence, they’re concerned the fight lasted about five minutes and police are nowhere in sight.

“Well, a better police presence in downtown would be nice,” said Ortega.

That’s exactly what Mayor Tim Keller promised almost a year ago.

“And instead, have a dedicated command structure that reflects the notion of what it means to have a downtown community policing-era and program in downtown Albuquerque,” said Mayor Keller in September 2018.

Back then, the mayor announced he was adding more officers to the downtown area to help curb the crime problem. But in this long fight to clean up downtown, APD wasn’t there to break it up.

“Literally five minutes of nobody doing anything, no cops, no one is saying anything,” said local Ortega.

Some were upset this violent attack happened next to a busy intersection.

“They were probably parked right there and nobody came down,” said local Carissa Simmons More.

Other people defended police, saying they can’t be everywhere immediately.

“I don’t think they’re going to have a police officer behind the people all the time because they’re taking care of other situations,” said Delao.

APD said they can’t find any 911 calls to match the video, so it’s difficult for them to comment on why they weren’t around to break it up. They did say investigators are looking into the video.

That video was just posted on YouTube last week. KRQE News 13 reached out to the man who posted it for more info on when it happened and why no one called police, but did not hear back.

Full statement from the Albuquerque Police Department and the Mayor’s office:

We have not been able to locate any calls for service at that location or in the vicinity that match the fight in the video. It is difficult to comment on an incident that we do not know about, nor when it may have occurred. Often times. People re-post videos even years afterward. Our gang unit is also looking into the video.

That said, the video itself is alarming. We urge people who witness this type of violence to call police immediately. Recording video and posting on social media only serves to glorify this brutality.

Gilbert Gallegos, APD spokesperson

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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