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Questions loom after Albuquerque police shooting

Rescue workers prepare to transport Shaine Sherrill who was shot during an officer-involved shooting near Wyoming and Northeastern NE on Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)
Rescue workers prepare to transport Shaine Sherrill who was shot during an officer-involved shooting near Wyoming and Northeastern NE on Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)
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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Three days after a suspect was shot by Albuquerque police, questions remain over whether he was armed as originally reported, and the department has provided few answers.

Shaine Sherrill was shot Sunday by at least two Albuquerque police officers following a domestic violence call and later was rushed to a hospital where he was listed in critical condition, officials said.

But since the initial update at the scene of the shooting, the Albuquerque Police Department has not given much more information about the case, although police released the names of officers involved on Wednesday.

Albuquerque acting Police Chief Allen Banks told reporters at the scene that an officer had announced that Sherrill had a gun. Yet, Banks added that it was unclear whether Sherrill, 34, was indeed armed.

Albuquerque Police Department spokeswoman Tasia Martinez said the officers linked to the shooting were Luke McPeek, Jim Edison and David Munoz.

The Albuquerque Police Department has not responded to repeated emails and phone calls from The Associated Press to inquire on the condition of Sherrill.

The Albuquerque police union did not return a voice mail left after-hours by the AP after the officers’ names were released.

Meanwhile, Sherrill’s mother, Karri Sherrill, told KOAT-TV hospital officials that her son is suffering from several gunshot wounds. She said his spleen was removed, he has a collapsed lung and a broken arm and leg.

Sherrill also said her son has undergone several surgeries and has several more to go.

“He’s got a big heart, though. He’s more scared of getting hurt than hurting someone,” Karri Sherrill said. She told other media outlets that her son suffers from depression, may be bipolar and had threatened suicide in the past.

Banks said Shaine Sherrill had at least 12 felony warrants at the time of the shooting.

It was the fourth shooting involving police in the state’s largest city in just over a month.

The Albuquerque Police Department has been involved in more than two dozen officer-involved shootings since 2010, including 19 in which suspects were killed.

Critics have blamed the shootings on a departmental culture that fosters brutality, and the U.S. Department of Justice last year launched a civil rights probe of the agency. Albuquerque police officials have said they are instituting several reforms, including raising the standards for new officers.

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