I never thought I’d need this category.
The Wars on Drugs and Terrorism have so militarized the local police, even in smaller towns, that they have become an occupying force engaged in the War on People. We brought this on ourselves. Who profited from this?
Boyd autopsy reveals he was shot in back | Albuquerque Journal News By Patrick Lohmann / Journal Staff Writer UPDATED: Friday, May 30, 2014 at 12:01 pm
The 30-page autopsy said Boyd suffered three gunshot wounds from separate bullets, but the one to his lower back seems to have been the most destructive: A bullet passed through the muscle in his lower abdomen, his left adrenal gland, his large intestine, spleen, diaphragm and left lung before exiting his left armpit. The bullet then re-entered his upper left arm and was recovered by medical investigators, according to the autopsy.
The other bullets also struck Boyd’s arms, including one in his upper right arm that entered from the back and exited the front of his arm. In addition, a bullet struck Boyd’s upper left arm and exiting through back, according to the autopsy.
Because of the damage done to Boyd’s right arm, doctors had to amputate it as they conducted several emergency surgeries to try to resuscitate him, according to the report. He arrived at the University of New Mexico Hospital at 8:15 p.m., the autopsy stated, and his time of death was shortly before 3 a.m. on March 17.
The report also said Boyd suffered several blunt-force injuries, contusions and abrasions on his buttock and right leg, some of which were “consistent with injuries produced by a dog.” Officers were seen on the video loosing a police dog on Boyd.
In addition to documenting the injuries, medical investigators found that Boyd appeared older than his stated age and that he had no illegal drugs or alcohol in his system.
Among the items investigators associated with Boyd were clothes, a toothbrush and a Bible. They also pulled Taser prongs from his clothing, according to the report.
Boyd died after 12 hours in hell.
Leslie Linthicum sums up the lingering problems with this killing and finds some historical nuance (follow the link for the whole story).
A sad tale of police, guns and a family history | Albuquerque Journal News By Leslie Linthicum / Of the Journal PUBLISHED: Sunday, June 1, 2014 at 12:05 am
“This shooting just made me feel so profoundly sad,” someone said to me the other day. Me too. And I’ve been pondering why.
Is it because Hawkes was the first woman to join the list of people killed by city police officers since 2010? Because she was 5-foot-2 and barely 100 pounds? Because she was really just a kid?
Is it that it seemed avoidable – a forced confrontation in the middle of the night to flush out a suspect in a 2-week-old auto theft case? Couldn’t an arrest warrant in the morning have kept everyone safer?
Is it the autopsy findings – a bullet shot into her left ear, another into her left bicep and another through the top of her right shoulder – which seem hard to square with the stated scenario of Hawkes stopping, turning and pointing a handgun just before she was shot?
Mary Hawkes, 19, was the first woman killed by APD since 2010.
Is it the autopsy findings of scrapes and bruises on her chest, both knees and the backs of both forearms?
Is it the absence of the officer’s lapel cam video that would answer those questions about what she and the officer were doing when she was shot?
Each time someone is killed by police, there’s a rippling of effects – the personal tragedy to the family, the toll on the police officer who has taken a life and the public policy discussion about whether it was an avoidable use of deadly force.
With that in mind, I also wonder whether the Hawkes killing continues to nag me because of her family history, which brings additional layers of nuance and complication.
I’m surprised but pleased to see the Albuquerque Journal ask this question. Let’s hope they keep asking it every day until APD answers.
By Albuquerque Journal Editorial Board
PUBLISHED: Wednesday, May 28, 2014 at 12:05 am
OK, now we know – no lapel camera video exists of the Albuquerque Police Department fatal shooting of vehicle theft suspect Mary Hawkes in April.
Leading to the obvious question: Did the officer turn on his camera, or not?
After all this time, APD still isn’t saying whether the camera malfunctioned or whether officer Jeremy Dear, who shot Hawkes three times during a foot chase, failed to activate it. Dear has a history of not producing video recordings during incidents in which he used force. Failure to video record citizen contacts can – and should – result in discipline at APD.
What is to be gained by APD’s refusal to say whether the camera was on? Not giving what should be a very simple answer just leads to the suspicion that it probably wasn’t. But if Dear didn’t turn it on, in violation of department policy, that should factor into his Internal Affairs investigation and any potential discipline.
And revealing whether he claims he turned it on, or not, should not affect his due process rights. But this stonewalling certainly isn’t helping APD.
Less than two weeks before Hawkes was shot, the U.S. Department of Justice issued a report that concluded APD has a pattern and practice of violating people’s civil rights and using excessive force. Among criticisms, the DOJ cited officers’ inconsistent use of lapel cameras and the department’s failure to enforce its policy covering their use.
The public deserves to know if its officers are following the rules – and if they essentially feel free to disregard them. APD brass should tell the whole truth in the Hawkes shooting and also start handing out meaningful consequences when its rules aren’t followed.
This editorial first appeared in the Albuquerque Journal. It was written by members of the editorial board and is unsigned as it represents the opinion of the newspaper rather than the writers.
Officer Dear shot a teenage girl last month. His video camera wasn’t on. A year earlier, his video camera wasn’t on when he kneed a speeder in the groin. Last month, a different cop kneed a DWI suspect in the groin so hard the victim lost a testicle.
- Does the police academy teach officers to knee non-violent citizens in the groin?
- Has anyone ever been reprimanded at APD for violence against non-violent citizens?
I want to hear from the police academy. I want all of the instructors to stand up and say we NEVER encourage our students to use violence in a non-violent situation and we ALWAYS tell them to use their video cameras. I want to hear that from every single instructor at the police academy. If they can’t all say that honestly, it’s time for heads to roll at the academy. Then, the mayor can fire police supervisors who don’t punish violent cops.
in February 2013, Dear pulled a man over for speeding. The man later filed a citizen complaint, alleging Dear used excessive force by pulling him out of his car, kicking him in the genitals and setting the handcuffs too tight.
Dear denied the excessive force allegations and said his lapel camera died soon after he approached the man. It’s unclear from the file whether he was disciplined.