APD, DA calling out judge over release of 18-year-old repeat shooting suspect


At just 18 years old, an Albuquerque man has become the focus of police and the Bernalillo County District Attorney.

They’re both calling out a Second Judicial District Court judge for her decision to release the teen, who has been quickly racking up a violent criminal record.

“Well, Mr. Gallegos has definitely been keeping us busy,” said Officer Simon Drobik.

Albuquerque Police say they’ve been running into 18-year-old Mariano Gallegos more than they’d like to. He’s accused of two shootings within the last three months.

“People who are violent, tend to remain violent. Past behavior will predict future behavior,” said Officer Drobik.

Officers are tired of criminals, like Gallegos, constantly being released from jail after police worked so hard to put them behind bars.

“For us, it’s frustrating because we know these guys are super violent. And it’s frustrating these guys are back out,” said Officer Drobik.

Police say in July, the teen randomly shot at a family in a car outside of the Lindo Mexico restaurant on Central near Louisiana. Gallegos allegedly hit the driver in the hand and barely missed the other passengers.

The DA’s office filed a motion to keep Gallegos behind bars until trial, saying he’s a danger to society.

However, court records show District Court Judge Cristina Jaramillo denied the motion and released him on his own recognizance.

“We know there’s a whole system in place, but we are the front lines that deals with these guys over and over. So, it is frustrating for the same officer to arrest the same for two different violent crimes,” said Officer Drobik.

Now, he’s in jail again for allegedly shooting a man over a girl on Thursday, near Lomas and San Pedro. The victim is clinging to life.

In response to this, the DA’s office released a statement expressing frustration with Judge Jaramillo’s previous decision to release him.

Police say, unfortunately, this has become a trend with violent offenders, even if it’s their first offense.

“He actually physically hurt somebody. That person probably needs to stay locked up more than maybe a drug use offense or a property crime offender,” says Ofc. Drobik.

The DA’s Office has once again filed a motion to keep Gallegos locked up until trial after this most recent shooting. His next court appearance has not yet been set.

Judge Jaramillo released Gallegos in the July case for a lack of criminal history.

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