ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The Albuquerque Police Department released lapel video Friday from at least seven officers involved in a fatal confrontation with 30-year-old Alfred Redwine, but none shows Redwine in the moments before he was killed and it remains unclear exactly what prompted officers to fire.
According to commentary from officers at the scene, Redwine was holding a gun to his head during the confrontation. “He has a gun to his head,” one of the officers says. “Alfred, we don’t want you to hurt yourself,” another officer says.
Police said at a news conference a few days after the March 25 shooting that Redwine fired his weapon, but they did not say where he fired or at whom. The new videos show a tense scene, but Redwine is always outside the frame.
However, a low-quality cellphone video posted earlier to YouTube showed Redwine holding something to his head, then lowering it toward the ground. Dust or smoke comes up from the ground, and approximately five shots can be heard.
APD spokesman Simon Drobik said no one from APD was available to comment late Friday afternoon.
It sounds like two guns fired the shots, although it’s unclear from the videos who fired. APD had identified James Eichel as the officer who fired at least one round at Redwine, and in the video, Eichel appears to recoil when shots are fired.
The shooting came hours after the first of a string of protests against the department’s use of force. The protests were sparked by the shooting of 38-year-old mentally ill James Boyd, who was camping illegally in the foothills.
Police Chief Gorden Eden said at the news conference following the Redwine shooting that police tried to negotiate with Redwine for 40 minutes before the shooting.
The new videos show that during the standoff police several times asked Redwine to come out of the home near Central and Coors. They never show him coming out of the home, but it is clear from the audio that he does come out and shots are fired soon after.
At the news conference, Eden showed reporters a photo of the gun found at the scene.
Tammy Redwine, Alfred’s sister, said she was talking to her brother via cellphone to try to get him to cooperate with police before the shooting.
Lapel video appears to show an officer grabbing a phone from her hand, and she begins to yell at police, “Why did you do that? You better not (expletive) shoot him.”
An officer replies “We’re not going to sh…” before the sister runs off.
Redwine can be heard on the video yelling, “Why did you take my son?” just before shots are fired.
Neighbors said he had recently lost custody of his 5-year-old son.
Dispatch logs released Friday also don’t clarify what prompted police to fire.
“Officers gave Alfred an order to drop the weapon, but in conclusion officers had to use deadly force to stop Alfred’s actions,” the dispatch logs read.
Redwine, who had posted photos of various weapons on his Facebook page, wrote about buying hollow-point bullets, which he referred to as “cop rounds,” and said in a post that he “can’t wait to try them.” He had a long rap sheet that included a charge for aggravated assault.
Eichel, along with three other officers, was put on leave, which is standard department practice.