ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – After using family tree DNA evidence to charge Angel Gurule with a cold case rape, Gurule could now face charges in another rape case.
Prosecutors with the Bernalillo County District Attorney’s Office say they are now reviewing a statutory rape case Gurule is accused in, a case that Albuquerque Police seemingly didn’t fully investigate years ago.
The statutory rape accusation comes from September 2015. According to police reports, Gurule is accused of having sex with a 14-year-old girl when he was 19-years-old.
Police reports obtained by KRQE News 13 through public records requests appear to show that APD detectives seemingly reopened their investigation into the case in January 2020, more than four years after the accusation.
Police body camera video tied to the statutory rape case captured APD officers initial September 2015 interview with a relative of the victim. The witness described to officers what another family member saw.
“This young man ran past my daughter and she said it just happened so fast because all she saw a t-shirt and a bottom, a bare bottom,” said the witness in the police body camera recording.
Gurule is accused of being caught by the victim’s family after he’d allegedly had sex with the victim at her home.
“You are 19 and she is 14 and… I’m a retired RN, and I said (to Gurule,) ‘In the state of New Mexico, that is statutory rape,” the witness told police during the September 2015 interview.
Police were told by the witness that Gurule met the girl at Sagebrush Church.
“She’s known this boy for three weeks because of our church, he’s in the youth leadership program at our church,” the witness said.
Officers took an initial report and had a technician take a bedsheet into evidence. According to police reports obtained by KRQE News 13, the case was handed off to APD detective “M. Miller” in September 2015.
That is where the investigation seemingly stopped, as no further documentation is associated with the case until January 2020. According to a police report, six days after Gurule was arrested in the running trail rape case, APD seemingly reopened its investigation into the case.
After conducting another series of interviews with the victim and other witnesses, a detective’s note also indicates that the department submitted a request for the bed sheet evidence to be tested at APD’s crime lab.
The police reports obtained by KRQE News 13 provide no explanation as to why the bedsheet evidence was not tested in the first place. A spokesman for the Bernalillo County District Attorney’s Office told KRQE News 13 on Monday that prosecutors received the case for review from APD last Friday.
Prosecutors are now considering if there’s enough evidence to charge Gurule.
KRQE News 13 asked as an APD spokesman Monday if the department was ever able to determine why the 2015 statutory rape case was never immediately investigated. APD Spokesman Gilbert Gallegos provided the following statement:
“The 2015 case was investigated and forwarded to the District Attorney’s Office on January 30th 2020. The incident occurred during a previous administration. We searched and did not find any records of this case in Sex Crimes from 2015. The detective mentioned in the report is no longer with the Department.”–Gilbert Gallegos, APD Communications & Community Outreach Director
The Bernalillo County DA’s Office says it’s not sure when they’ll decide if Gurule will be charged with the statutory rape case. Gurule will remain in MDC on a pre-trial detention hold while his December 2015 rape case plays out in court.