Body cam shows APD officers shooting a suspect who threw soft-ball-sized landscaping rocks at them
On Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022, APD dispatchers were alerted a ShotSpotter notification at 2:12 a.m. indicating three gunshots were possibly fired in the area of 3000 Carlisle Blvd., N.E.
As officers were dispatched, APD was alerted to another ShotSpotter notification at 2:18 a.m. with possibly four gunshots fired at 3200 Carlisle Blvd., N.E.
At 2:20 a.m., a resident called 911 and reported she heard 4-5 gunshots west of her residence.
At 2:25, an officer arrived in the area of Carlisle Blvd. and Candelaria Rd., and he noticed a suspicious individual standing by the front windows of the BK Convenience Store, which was closed at the time. The officer parked across the street and observed the individual, later identified as Gabriel Garcia, trying to pry open the front window.
A short time later, a second officer arrived at the convenience store and observed the Garcia tampering with the window with a small crow bar tool. Garcia saw the officer and walked away from the building to the north. The officer approached Garcia and asked him what he was doing. Garcia stated he was urinating by the building.
Additional officers approached and Garcia ran behind the store and away from officers.
One officer pursued Garcia on foot. The officer later told investigators he observed Garcia reaching toward his waistline and pockets several times as they pursued him. The officer told a second officer to watch out for Garcia’s hands.
Garcia ran west along Carlisle Blvd. and jumped the fence behind a business on Candelaria Rd. Officers continued to pursue Garcia. An officer exited his vehicle at 3321 Candelaria Rd. N.E., drew his handgun and gave Garcia commands to stop and show his hands. The officer continued to give commands to show his hands or he would be tased.
Garcia threw two, soft-ball-sized landscaping rocks at the officer, who said he feared he was going to be hit in the head. The officer discharged his handgun to stop Garcia’s actions. The officer told investigators he saw Garcia reach toward his waistband again as he turned to the west. The officer said he believed Garcia was reaching for a weapon and he fired additional shots.
After the shooting, officers located blood and began to search for Garcia. At 3:23 a.m., Garcia walked out of an alleyway onto Aztec Road, just west of Lafayette Dr. Officers took Garcia into custody and observed that he had an apparent gunshot wound to his upper right shoulder. Rescue personnel treated Garcia and transported him to the hospital.
Investigators interviewed Garcia who said he did not remember anything about the incident until officers applied a tourniquet to his arm. He told officers he used Methamphetamine and Fentanyl prior to the incident.
Garcia was charged with Aggravating Assault on a Police Officer, Attempted Breaking and Entering, Possession of burglary tools, Criminal damage to property under $1,000 and Obstructing, Resisting, or Eluding police officers.