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Officer accidentally shoots man in neighboring apartment

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — An Albuquerque police officer accidentally discharged his weapon while investigating a burglary early Sunday, striking and injuring a man in a neighboring apartment, police said.

The officer’s service pistol discharged as he climbed into the broken window of a second-floor apartment in the 500 block of Charleston SE about 5 a.m., police spokesman Simon Drobik said.

The round passed through the floor of the apartment and struck a man in the back, Drobik said. The gunshot victim was listed Sunday in stable condition at University of New Mexico Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, he said.

Police did not identify the officer or the man he shot.

“I want to emphasize this was an accidental shooting,” Drobik said. “The officer involved in this is just torn up.”

Officers found the gunshot victim lying on his couch in a first-floor apartment complaining of pain in his back, Drobik said.

The shooting occurred after police were dispatched to the apartment building in response to a burglary in progress. Officers took a man into custody who was found loading merchandise into a vehicle outside the building.

An officer noticed a broken window in the second-floor apartment and climbed into the window with his service weapon drawn when the pistol discharged, Drobik said. The officer was entering the apartment to determine whether anyone was inside.

The accidental shooting comes as Albuquerque police launch a series of reforms mandated by an Oct. 31 settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice. The agreement followed a federal investigation that found APD had a pattern or practice of violating people’s rights through the use of force.

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