Last week proved to be a memorable for the two challenges brought upon individual liberty by the forces of the Albuquerque Police Department and the United States Attorney’s Office.
On Tuesday,the labor hearing of John Doyle v. City of Albuquerque/Ray Schultz commenced. In this hearing, former APD officer John Doyle contests whether or not the city had just cause to terminate his employment. Over a year ago, then Officer Doyle was placed on administrative leave as the department started yet a second internal investigation into his arrest of wanted armed and fleeing felon Nicholas Blume. While APD encouraged proactive efforts by officers to apprehend Blume through internal briefings by Gang Unit detectives, wanted flyers, emails, and interdepartmental memorandums, Officer Doyle and Officer Woolever managed to find Blume. In the now widely known yet partial video of Blume’s apprehension, both officers manage to apprehend the fleeing armed felon without him sustaining any significant injuries. We at the Eye are very specific about this statement because despite crashing his car, despite falling almost eight feet,despite actively resisting two officers, Blume did not endure any significant injuries and was booked into MDC after being denied admission into UNMH. Sadly, instead of recognizing that policework frequently involves the use of physical force instead of abandoning efforts to the use of gunfire, the mayor’s police chief, Ray Schultz did the unthinkable, he railroaded a second self-directed internal investigation which resulted in the termination of officers Doyle and Woolever.
Despite the fact, at best, APD’s investigation of the officers was incomplete, and at worse involved grotesque omissions and misrepresentations of fact (and possible violations of law), Chief Schultz moved forward with the termination of the officers last November. Mr. Doyle’s hearing is the first opportunity where, hopefully, there will be an objective analysis of the event’s facts and an exposure of the misconduct by persons involved in the investigation. Thus far the hearing, which continues on August 1st and 2nd is explosive in the detailing of APD’s internal misconduct. In her efforts to discredit Mr. Doyle, APD lawyer Kathy Levy, discredits almost a dozen officers including a retired Commander…
On the other side of the city, assistant U.S. Attorney Tera Neda continues with her obsessive and vindictive actions against former APD officer Brad Ahrensfield. Mr. Ahrensfield was accused by Ms. Neda of violating conditions of his release while he awaits appeal of his conviction last year. While Mr. Ahrensfield’s conditions of release permitted him to possess firearms in work related situations, Ms. Neda felt the conditions breeched her interpretations of his release. Furthermore, when Mr.Ahrensfield advised APD Officer Bonet of the civil liability he was taking on in the apparent untruthfulness involving a botched DWI arrest, Mr. Ahrensfield was accused of witness intimidation. We at the Eye have to remind our readers that informing a person that another person has civil liberty rights that may be protected by court action is NOT witness intimidation. However, in Mr.Ahrensfield’s hearing last Friday, Judge Parker of the US District Court continued Mr. Ahrensfield freedom despite the veiled threats by Ms. Neda. Apparently Ms. Neda thinks an on-going investigation by DCOP Paul Feist (aka Fiesta), when an initial investigation resulted in no new charges against Mr. Ahreansfield, may mean something. Perhaps Ms. Neda should be reminded it was the unlawful actions of DCOP Feist that resulted in former APD officer Russell Perea’s reinstatement or Feist reprehensible management of the west mesa serial murder investigation or other prominent death investigations have decimated DCOP Feist’s ability to function as an officer of APD.
What is clear; Mr. Doyle and Mr. Ahrensfield are the targets of clearly prejudicial actions of Chief Ray Schultz. While in so many aspects APD suffers from controversy in its incompetence and ineffectiveness, Chief Schultz spends endless amounts of resources and manpower against these two individuals. Former officer Doyle arrested one of the most wanted and violent felons with minimal injury and for that he is terminated. Former officer Ahrensfield was wrongfully tried by a federal prosecutor whose actions resulted in her removal of litigation against former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson. If these ordeals facing Mr. Doyle and Mr.Ahrensfield go unchecked and unreconciled, then we all must consider that if they can do this to them, then imagine what they will do to regular citizens. If Chief Schultz will order and endorse what can only be described as prejudicial and retaliatory actions against his own officers, than what protections can general citizens expect from him?
As we approach this Country’s most important holiday, July 4th; we must not forget that when liberties of one are lost, we all lose.
Quote of the Day
Does this sound familiar? This is right from the dictionary and seems to describe Albuquerque, Berry and Schultz. Fascism (f ash ,izem) noun An authoritarian right wing system of government and/or social organization. (in general use) extreme right wing, authoritarian, chauvinistic and/or intolerant views or practices. Fascism tends to include a belief in the supremacy of one group over another, national, ethnic, especially social strata or monetarily; a contempt for democracy, an insistence on obedience to a powerful leader, and a strong demagogic approach. Compliments of one of our Eyes