Families of people killed by the Albuquerque police department are campaigning for systemic reforms to the APD and to hold police officers accountable for their actions. The following email is from Ken Ellis, the father of a man killed by the police.
From: Ken Ellis II via Strong Families, New Mexico
Reply to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Holding police officers accountable
Four years ago, my son Kenneth – an Iraq war veteran and father to a 4-year-old son – was shot to death by a police officer in a 7-Eleven parking lot. A judge later ruled that my son posed no threat to anyone – but the officer who killed my son has never been charged and still works for the Albuquerque Police department.
My son is not the APD’s only victim – Albuquerque police officers have shot and killed more than 27 people since 2007.
I started a petition to call on the Department of Justice to hold the officer who killed my son and others accountable for what they’ve done. Please join my campaign calling on the Department of Justice to investigate and prosecute the Albuquerque police officers who shot my son and other members of our community.
A recent investigation conducted by the Department of Justice concluded that the APD has an ongoing pattern of using “excessive and fatal force” and most of the police shootings between 2009 and 2012 – including my son’s – were unconstitutional. But the DOJ has failed to take action on its own findings and hold APD officers who have shot and killed our community members accountable.
The DOJ has to step in. Local and state prosecutors work closely with the local and state police departments because they often depend on police testimony to win cases. That means local prosecutors cannot be expected to hold those same police officers, their trusted colleagues, accountable for criminal acts.
Ken Ellis II