- Associated Press - Thursday, December 1, 2016

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - The Police Oversight Board is asking authorities to investigate allegations that Albuquerque police have altered or deleted video recordings from officers’ lapel cameras.

Board members voted Wednesday to make two formal requests for investigations, reported The Albuquerque Journal (https://bit.ly/2gN1NX3 ). The board will ask either the FBI or New Mexico State Police to determine whether any officers broke the law. It will also ask an independent expert to determine whether any administrative rules were broken.

City officials have also said they plan to hire an independent investigator to look into the issue.

The concern stems from comments by former police records custodian Reynaldo Chavez, who said in a nine-page sworn affidavit that the department trained certain units and command staff to edit videos of interactions with civilians beginning in 2013. Chavez said videos were altered at the time of two fatal shootings by police, and his affidavit was filed as part of a lawsuit over one of those shootings.

Chavez was fired in August 2015.

Oversight board chairwoman Beth Mohr said she isn’t sure if Chavez is telling the truth, but that the accusations are very serious and involve the police chief and high-ranking police administration members. She said she could envision the board calling for resignations if the allegations are proven true.

But “we’re not there yet, I don’t think,” she said during the meeting.


Information from: Albuquerque Journal, https://www.abqjournal.com

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