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APD releases details of Officer-Involved Shooting on West Side

The Albuquerque Police Department released details of an officer-involved shooting that took place on March 30, 2024, at 717 59th St., N.W.
May 03, 2024

ALBUQUERQUE – The Albuquerque Police Department released details of an officer-involved shooting that took place on March 30, 2024, at 717 59th St., N.W.

Shooting on March 29

Officers in the Southwest Area Command responded to a shooting on March 29, a day before the officer-involved shooting on March 30.

On March 29, officers were called to a domestic dispute at the same home, located at 717 59th St., N.W. The suspect, Alijah Archuleta, had refused to let his girlfriend exit the vehicle with their two-year-old son. They eventually exited and as they walked to the front door of the home, Archuleta discharged a handgun as he drove away.

Archuleta’s girlfriend told police that he drove around the block and fired the handgun a second time. Nobody was injured. APD’s ShotSpotter system captured both shootings and investigators located bullet casings.

Officers drafted an arrest warrant the next day, on March 30, charging Archuleta with aggravated Assault upon a household member, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, false imprisonment, shooting at or from a motor vehicle, and child abuse without great bodily harm.


Officer-Involved Shooting on March 30

On March 30, within an hour of officers submitting the arrest warrant to the District Attorney’s Office, the same officers were notified by APD dispatch of a 911 call stating Archuleta returned to the home at 717 59th St.

Officers met the 911 caller, the mother of Archuleta’s girlfriend, near the home to assess the situation. The woman told officers Archuleta was inside a vehicle in front of the home, and she was afraid he would fire shots like he did the previous day.

Officers developed a plan to approach the area and attempt a felony traffic stop on the car in front of the home. As officers approached the vehicle with their emergency lights activated, two individuals ran from the front of the home to the vehicle, a Chrysler 300. One individual entered the back seat on the driver’s side of the vehicle, while the second male, later identified as Archuleta, ran around the front of the car and entered the front passenger side.

Officer Nathien Apodaca, who was still inside his police vehicle, fired his department-issued rifle seven times through the front windshield, toward the vehicle that Archuleta was entering. Apodaca later told investigators he saw a black handgun in Archuleta’s left hand. He said somebody yelled gun and he heard a gunshot. He saw Archuleta begin to raise the gun with his left arm, and Apodaca fired shots toward Archuleta.

A second officer, Hernan Conchas, was standing outside his police vehicle and fired a single shot toward the vehicle after it fled with Archuleta in the passenger seat. Conchas later told investigators that he saw Archuleta holding a black object that looked like a handgun. He said he saw Archuleta turn his head and raise a long black object over to his left side, possibly arming himself with a different firearm.

Following the shooting, the suspect vehicle fled northbound on 59th Street. Four individuals were in the car, including Archuleta. As police pursued them, additional officers set up a stop stick that successfully deflated the tires of the vehicle at 59th and Glenrio Rd., N.W. The vehicle continued to drive to west Bluff Park, located on Hurley Dr., just north of I-40 and west of the Bosque, where all of the occupants exited and fled on foot.

Several APD units, including Air Support, saturated the area to search for the individuals. One individual was detained in the Bosque.

Detectives later obtained a search warrant for the car and located a handgun under the passenger seat where Archuleta was sitting. A rifle was located on the backseat of the vehicle. Detectives also located more than $18,000 in cash in the car.

Officers tracked Archuleta and arrested him on April 16 at his mother’s apartment, located at 1801 Girard Blvd., S.E. During an interview with detectives, Archuleta said as he fled from officers on the day of the shooting, he grabbed the rifle from the front seat and put it onto the back seat so it would not be in his possession if officers captured him. He also said he received a minor wound on his foot that was received when officers shot at him.

Archuleta was arrested for his warrant related to the shooting at his girlfriend’s house on March 29. He is being held in jail until his trial.

Over the next several months, the Multi-Agency Task Force will continue to investigate and analyze this incident. Detectives will interview any new witnesses that come forward and complete any forensic tests. After the investigation is complete, the case will be forwarded to the District Attorney’s Office to make any determination of criminal charges.

APD’s Internal Affairs Force Division will also investigate the shooting to determine whether the department’s policies were followed. The results of the administrative investigation will be forwarded to the city’s Superintendent of Police Reform to make final decisions on discipline.

APD’s Force Review Board, made up of deputy chiefs, will also review the incident to identify trends and potential policy changes that may be needed in response to any shortcomings that are identified.


SUBJECT: Alijah Archuleta, 19


Officer Nathien Apodaca, who has been with the department since 2021, has not been involved in prior officer-involved shootings.

Officer Hernan Conchas, who has been with the department since 2021, has not been involved in prior officer-involved shootings.