The Albuquerque Police officer ProgressNowNM exposed kneeing a man in the groin and deleting cell phone video of the encounter has lost his police officer certification, according to a report by the Albuquerque Journal.
An Albuquerque police officer who allegedly kicked a law student in the groin during a traffic stop, causing him to lose a testicle, had his law enforcement certification revoked by the New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy Board on Tuesday…
On April 25, Padilla pulled over 24-year-old Jeremy Martin for running a stop sign. Lapel camera video, obtained and released by ProgressNow New Mexico, showed Martin refusing to sit down on the curb, angering Padilla. Padilla is shown slamming the student into his truck, swearing at him, apparently kicking him in the groin and then deleting video that Martin’s passenger had taken of the incident. Martin’s testicle had to be surgically removed after the altercation.
Read the full ABQ Journal story here.
In May, ProgressNowNM obtained the lapel camera video of APD Officer Pablo Padilla’s traffic stop and arrest of a UNM student near the university campus. The video showed the officer placing a knee strike to the suspect’s groin which ultimately cost the man a testicle.
Prior to ProgressNowNM releasing the video, APD had not publicly disclosed the encounter or result.
After first being alerted to this incident, we obtained the police report and shared it with KOB-TV. Their first story reported the tragic result and prompted APD to launch an internal investigation.
After obtaining the lapel video, we are sharing it and asking if the circumstances seen on tape match the report and whether the incident deserves further scrutiny.
Read the full report from May 2014 here.
In the video, Officer Padilla can be seen deleting a cell phone video of the encounter from a cellular phone that appears to have been taken from a witness. Investigations by APD and the state’s Law Enforcement Academy Board appear to corroborate this improper (and illegal?) search and destruction of evidence.
Last September, the city’s Independent Review Office released findings and conclusions on the incident, affirming Padilla had violated standard operating procedures nine times throughout Martin’s arrest by seizing a cellphone and deleting a video taken by a person not involved in the investigation, and improper use of force and profanity.
Neither Officer Padilla nor the other officers who responded to assist took the man to the hospital for treatment. He was only sent to a local emergency room after jail officials became concerned about his injuries. Surgeons removed one of the man’s testicles in emergency surgery.
The Albuquerque Police Department was placed under federal oversight in April after a series of officer-involved shootings and excessive uses of force cases made national news.
The Albuquerque Journal reports that APD’s chief, Gordon Eden, determined that the officer involved in this case should be suspended but not fired. Once the Academy Board’s certification revocation is certified Padilla will be unable to serve as a police officer anywhere in New Mexico. APD says it will take another look at Padilla’s position after receiving notice of the hearing.
Patrick Davis, Executive Director of ProgressNowNM:
“Watching this video, my heart goes out to the young man whose life is forever altered by his encounter with this officer; but, at least this case is moving towards some sense of justice for the victim and our city.
This case shows that public activism and oversight of our police department can work for the people, if we are vigilant and respectful in the process.
The academy board has done the right thing by defining what is, and isn’t, proper for our officers. Let’s hope Chief Eden follows suit and sends an equally strong message.”