Thursday, August 19, 2010
'Officer Was in a Fight for His Life'
By Astrid Galvan
Journal Staff Writer
The violent "tug of war" between Albuquerque police officer Josh Brown and Enrique Carrasco as Carrasco repeatedly jabbed at the driver's side window of a patrol car with a knife was a life-or-death struggle, Public Safety Director Darren White said Wednesday.
In the end, it was Carrasco, a city employee, who died after being shot by Brown, a two-year veteran.
The incident was APD's 10th officer-involved shooting and its seventh fatal this year. It was Brown's first officer-involved shooting.
"This must have been a terrible ordeal for the officer," White said.
The incident began shortly after 6 p.m. Tuesday in the parking lot of the Ross discount store on Montgomery and San Mateo, police said. Callers told police a man and a woman were arguing. They said Carrasco, who has a prior felony conviction for biting and breaking a deputy's finger, slashed the tires on the pickup truck his 7-year-old daughter was in, police said.
The fight between Carrasco, 38, and his girlfriend, which started during a back-to-school shopping trip, had turned violent.
When officers arrived, Carrasco had run eastbound on Montgomery. Brown spotted him in front of Del Norte High School and pulled in front of him in the patrol car, police said. Carrasco jumped on the hood of Brown's patrol car and proceeded to jab at the driver's side window repeatedly with the knife. The window broke.
A "tug of war" between Brown and Carrasco ensued as Carrasco attempted to open the door and Brown fought him off, police said.
"This officer was in a fight for his life," White said.
Eventually, Brown shot Carrasco multiple times.
Carrasco's body fell hunched over Brown, trapping him. Another officer had to move the body, White said.
A family friend of Carrasco questioned police action when interviewed by a KOAT reporter.
Liza Romero told KOAT that police should not have shot Carrasco so many times.
White said Carrasco was a maintenance worker at the Palo Duro Senior Center near San Mateo and Comanche NE. He was hired three years ago.
Carrasco was arrested in 2000 after he bit and broke the finger of a Bernalillo County sheriff's deputy, according to a police report. He was eventually convicted of aggravated battery on a peace officer.