Report: VA had run-ins with shooting suspect

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Jodie Geddes is a heartbroken mother looking for answers.

“I felt like my heart had been ripped from my chest,” Geddes said. “My son’s dead, I’ll never see him again.”

Geddes’ son Gary Morrin was gunned down in Rio Rancho in February. According to a criminal complaint Morrin was at Donald Alber’s house helping his girlfriend Ashley Garcia gather her belongings when a fight broke out. Alber, a 66-year-old vet, fired shots, killing Morrin and wounding Morrin’s girlfriend.

Alber claimed he did it out of self defense, but investigators didn’t buy it and charged him with murder and attempted murder.

Now a police report from a month and a half earlier has Geddes wondering if the shootings could’ve been prevented.

In late December, APD was called to a Phillips 66 gas station at Interstate 40 and Wyoming. According to a police report, Alber was waving a gun around inside the convenience store, yelling about a man who broke his window. Officers had to put a combative, non-compliant Alber into handcuffs.

Because that gas station sells alcohol, Alber could’ve been arrested and charged with a fourth degree felony. But the officer decided to try and get Alber help instead of taking him to jail, calling for an ambulance.

According to a police report, Alber yelled at rescue workers, “Just kill me,” and, “I should just go back to ward 7.” A VA hospital spokesperson says that ward 7 is the psychiatric ward at the VA hospital.

After he was transported, Alber declined treatment and left the VA hospital.

Less than a week later, a VA hospital police officer contacted APD to discuss Alber saying that “each time [Alber] comes to the hospital they have issues with him.” According to a police report, in one prior incident Alber pulled a knife at the hospital, held it over his head and yelled at staff. On another occasion, Alber was involuntarily committed for mental issues.

The VA hospital police officer told APD he was very worried Alber was “going to harm someone and cause officers to use lethal force.”

A month and a half later, Alber shot two people, killing one.

“The VA should’ve done something about it… he should’ve been arrested,” Geddes said. “He should’ve never been allowed to be in the public,” Geddes said.

Geddes is trying to get answers about why he was.

A VA hospital spokesperson tells News 13 the hospital cannot comment on Alber’s mental health past due to patient confidentiality issues. An APD spokesperson responded to a request for comment late Thursday night saying they didn’t have the proper information to respond.

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