VIDEO: Santa Fe man accused of killing popular Albuquerque rapper denies driving drunk

Crime

SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – He was a New Mexico rapper whose bright future was cut short after a suspected drunk driver crashed into him, killing him. Newly released police video shows what that driver told police and why they weren’t buying it.

It was a chaotic November night when Santa Fe Police say Diego Pichardo-Rodriguez caused a big mess when he drove drunk down West Alameda Street, crashing into a silver car.

The driver of that car, 28-year old Andrew Martinez. He was known as an Albuquerque hip hop artist who performed as Wake Self. Martinez did not survive.

Witnesses on the scene told police Pichardo-Rodriguez was driving a black truck, going the wrong way. He survived the crash.

Pichardo-Rodriguez told officers at the hospital, he was not drinking and driving. Officers were not buying it.

Officer: “I can smell a very strong odor of alcohol coming from your body, man.”
Pichardo-Rodriguez: “That’s fine.”
Officer: “So, did you have a sip of beer or anything?”
Pichardo-Rodriguez: “No, sir.”
Officer: “Nothing at all? So can you explain why you smell like alcohol?”
Pichardo-Rodriguez: “Probably because I work in the industry.”
Officer: “You work in the industry? Okay, that doesn’t explain why it’s emitting from your body. You have no clothes on right now.”

Once he was released from the hospital, officers paid him a visit at his house with a copy of his arrest warrant. He’s been slapped with a number of charges including homicide by vehicle and DWI.

Wake Self was scheduled to release his third album called “Ready to Live” at Meow Wolf, the same week he was killed. Pichardo-Rodriguez is also facing another DWI from June. That case is still pending. This is the third time he’s been charged with DWI.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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