ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Albuquerque has a new police officer and he’s a lot younger than anyone else on the force. On Friday, Make-A-Wish New Mexico granted the wish of a 10-year-old battling Muscular Dystrophy and he’s already preparing for his next big case.
It was an exciting day for Andrew Martines, but it’s not over yet. There’s a “bank robber” on the loose, and the rookie officer is tasked with bringing him down, and they want the public to help.
Andrew is the strong, silent type but, there’s no shortage of words you can find to describe him.
“He’s amazing, strong, wonderful little boy,” says his mother Tina Martines.
As a 10-year-old struggling with Muscular Dystrophy, Andrew’s strength needs little explanation.
“It’s really life-threatening. He could go at any time,” says Andrew’s uncle Nick Martines.
It’s why the Make-A-Wish New Mexico wasted no time in making Andrew’s dream come true.
“We do different kinds of wishes, but this is a wish to be something and those are the ones that have the most creativity and also give the community the most opportunity to be involved,” says Make-A-Wish New Mexico President and CEO Bob Biggers.
Andrew’s mother Tina says it’s been Andrew’s dream for years.
“Since he’s was 4 years old, he’s wanted to be a police officer,” says Tina Martines.
Chief Gordon Eden swore in Andrew as the youngest Albuquerque Police Officer in history. Not only that, but Andrew was then promoted to SWAT and was tasked with his first big assignment – catching the Sunday Morning Bandit.
“What do you think is going to be the hardest part about catching that bandit?”
“I don’t know,” replied Andrew.
On Sunday, dispatch will contact Martines – now known as Officer 711. They’ll radio him the alert – the Sunday Morning Bandit has struck again. He’ll track the suspect in Air One before joining a motorcade. Yet, before they apprehend the bandit, they’ll make the obligatory cop stop at Dunkin’ Donuts.
“It’s going to be a giant, giant donut, all for him,” says Dunkin’ Donuts owner Derek Beliveau. “It’s nice to give back, to help someone out, to give him a great experience.”
Finally, they’ll arrive at Taylor Park, to take down the Sunday Morning Bandit.
Police say helping Andrew realize his dream was a no-brainer.
“The entire department has come together. The logistics have worked out seamlessly, it’s just been amazing. We are so, so, happy that we could help make a wish and young Andrew and make his wish come true,” says APD Officer Tanner Tixier. “This is what he wants, this is what he strives for, this is what he dreams about every night and making that come true is huge.”
It’s something his family describes as bittersweet.
“It’s really amazing, at the same time, kind of sad, but it’s been wonderful,” says Tina Martines.
Andrew couldn’t be more excited.