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APD Chief requests independent review of fire incident that resulted

Department provides updates on outside reviews

Tues. July 12, 2022

ALBUQUERQUE – APD Chief Harold Medina asked state Attorney General Hector Balderas to conduct an independent review of the department’s handling of the July 6, 2022, critical incident in Southeast Albuquerque. The incident resulted in a house fire that led to the tragic death of 15-year-old Brett Rosenau. The Chief is also requesting an analysis of the deployment of the non-lethal device used and if it malfunctioned. The device is used by agencies throughout the country, including NM State Police, BCSO and the FBI. There are currently separate investigations underway for this incident.

“Out of an abundance of caution, I am requesting the assistance of your office to conduct a review of our handling of the incident,” Chief Medina said. “If the chemical device is determined to be the cause of the fire, I would also request that your office provide us with an independent analysis of the device and deployment procedures.”

The letter can be viewed here.

Albuquerque Fire Rescue investigators are conducting an arson investigation to determine the cause of the fire. The results will be released to the public. There is also a multi-agency task force conducting a criminal investigation, and the results will be forwarded to the District Attorney for review.

APD is also required to report details of the investigations to the Department of Justice and the Independent Monitor as part of the Court-Approved Settlement Agreement. In addition, APD will publicly release video from officers who were part of the incident, as well as drone and other video related to the incident.

Mayor Tim Keller spoke with Attorney General Balderas to emphasize the need for an independent review.

“The tragic loss of a loving son and brother for one family, and the loss of a home for another is causing them and our community unimaginable pain,” said Mayor Keller. “For our community and department to move forward, a thorough and independent assessment into what happened and what can be done to prevent a tragedy like this from happening again is imperative.” 

 

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