The Albuquerque police department has come under fire for killing a possibly unarmed suspect on his front porch just 10 days after officers shot an unarmed homeless man to death for what was essentially a trespassing charge.
In the most recent case, the shooting death of Alfred Redwine, police insisted the man was armed and fired first, according to The Associated Press.
Police Chief Gorden Eden said he does not yet know whether the shooting was justified.
Family members who witnessed the shooting claim that Redwine was unarmed, however. He was holding a cell phone, not a weapon, they said.
Police were responding to a domestic disturbance call in which a woman claimed that Redwine was pointing a gun at her children.
“He did not have a gun. He only had a cellphone,” said Tammy Redwine, Alfred’s sister, in a statement. “I know because I was talking to him and telling him to come out and talk to the police.”
Redwine was the second ABQ police victim in 10 days. Officers also killed a homeless man who had camped in an unauthorized area. Police evidently only meant to shoot him with non-lethal rounds, but at least one real round hit him, and he died from his injuries. (RELATED: Was this man killed by cops because he camped in the wrong spot?)
The ABQ police department is currently under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice