ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – She’d been terrorizing everyone on her block for a year. KRQE Investigative Reporter Gabrielle Burkhart first reported the story of a nuisance neighbor wreaking havoc on her block and getting away with it. Now things have escalated, and she was finally arrested.
“Yesterday was a good day,” Bette Kogut told KRQE News 13. For now, she’s counting her blessings. Because for the past year, she and her neighbors have been scared to step outside.
“You don’t work here. I’ve never seen your dirty f****** n***** a**!” Marsh is captured on video shouting at her neighbor’s delivery driver.
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All because of this woman who lives on the block, Kathleen Marsh. KRQE Investigates highlighted the problem back in January, showing video after video of Marsh spraying her neighbors with a hose, yelling obscenities and spitting at them, and even throwing rocks at people and passing vehicles.
“I’ll beat your f***** a**!” Marsh is captured on a Ring Doorbell camera telling another neighbor.
It’s all evidence people in this neighborhood near the Ladera Golf Course in northwest Albuquerque have had to keep to try and get some help. “She definitely needs the help. our community, our little neighborhood needs the help as well,” Lexie Hernandez told KRQE News 13 in a previous interview.
Previously when police were called, Albuquerque Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Officers would spend hours talking to Marsh, but neighbors said she wouldn’t come out. And since she hadn’t committed any felonies, police couldn’t force her out.
On Thursday, Kogut said, that finally changed. “They’re telling her this is not business as usual, you need to come out,” Kogut recalled. “We are not leaving this time. We’re not leaving. And so they told her, ‘if you don’t comply – and they were out there for several hours – ‘if you don’t comply,’ because they didn’t want to hurt her, ‘we will bring in SWAT.'”
Albuquerque Police were there to serve a felony warrant for aggravated assault stemming from an encounter with Kogut three weeks ago, where Kogut claims Marsh tried to run her over.
“And she’s gotten so bold, she comes across the street now you know, trying to run over somebody – that’s aggressive,” said Kogut. “And flipping the papers, you know, from the court. ‘They don’t care about you, they don’t care about you. I can do whatever I want,'” Kogut said Marsh has told her.
It all came to a head when APD did send its SWAT unit to Marsh’s home on Thursday, and locked down the entire block. “Our neighborhood looked like a war zone,” said Kogut.
According to a criminal complaint, officers said Marsh rambled for hours from inside her house, getting angry, then calming down, and refusing to open her door for police.
“I showed you all the paperwork you wanted to see,” an officer told Marsh through her window. “You need to come to the front door.”
Crisis negotiators spoke with her through her window with no success for approximately two-and-a-half hours, according to a criminal complaint.
Officer: Can you peacefully come outside?
Officer: Why not?
Marsh: What for?
Officer: Because we have an arrest warrant for your arrest.
Since KRQE’s first report with Kogut, who serves as her neighborhood Block Captain and reports incidents with her Albuquerque Police Area Commander, she said things in the neighborhood have been “Terrible.”
Kogut said she’s not sure what made Marsh eventually walk outside with her hands up on Thursday. But it allowed the SWAT standoff to end the situation peacefully, and Kogut said, this was a step in the right direction.
“Walk backward to the sound of my voice!” An officer is heard on lapel video telling Marsh as she’s finally approaching officers.
“It’s hard to be happy about somebody getting arrested, but we’ve been living this for a year,” a weary Kogut explained. “We can’t go outside. We can’t do anything. We’re afraid to ride our bikes, take our kids out.”
As police walked Marsh to the patrol car, she told officers, “Yeah it took me a minute, I didn’t mean to disrupt your morning.”
After Marsh’s arrest, the neighborhood APD Area Commander himself walked up to Kogut and gave her a hug. “He’s been fighting this battle with us for a long time,” Kogut told KRQE News 13. “The look on his face was priceless. I’m almost going to cry thinking about it, but it was priceless.”
APD Area Commander gives Bette Kogut a hug after stressful SWAT situation | Courtesy: Bette Kogut
“All clear, all clear!” Officers were heard on the intercom. Hours since police arrived, Marsh was taken away in cuffs. She was booked into jail on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, larceny, failure to appear in court, and resisting, evading, or obstructing an officer.