ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Albuquerque police have released the names of the officers involved in the fatal confrontation with a man who police said was illegally camping in the Sandia foothills Sunday night.
Police identified officers Keith Sandy and Dominique Perez as the officers involved. Police have said a shot was fired during the standoff but have refused to answer questions about whether the man was hit or if he died from a gunshot wound.
Both officers have been placed on leave, which is standard following police-involved shootings.
The man’s identify has not been released, pending notification of his family.
APD officers had the man surrounded during an hours-long standoff near the Copper Trailhead. Non-lethal force also was used, but police haven’t said what that was. A witness told the Journal earlier this week that he saw what appeared to be a flash-bang grenade go off near the man just before several shots rang out.
Sandy has been an officer with APD since 2007 and Perez since 2006.
Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden Eden said Sunday night that Open Space officers were dispatched to a “suspicious person” in the foothills near the Copper trail head around 4 p.m. Sunday. The man, whom Eden described as a “suspect,” was armed with knives and “threatened the officers’ lives,” he said.
The man died at University of New Mexico Hospital on Monday morning.
Police have still not said what the specific action the man took that prompted police to use lethal force. The department has scheduled a news conference on the incident for Friday.
The U.S. Department of Justice is conducting a comprehensive investigation into whether APD has a “pattern or practice” of violating citizen’s Constitutional rights, specifically through the use of force. That investigation has been underway since November 2012.
— Read more: APD Under Fire: An interactive special report on the DOJ investigation into APD and the events that led up to it.