ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – A scary situation caught on Albuquerque police lapel cameras ended in a very unexpected way.
“Albuquerque police. Come out of the vehicle,” said police in the lapel video.
It was sudden. A pair of Albuquerque police officers arrived on scene of a possible car burglary in mid September with their guns drawn.
“Get on the ground. Over here,” said police.
At the time, the cops didn’t know the suspected car thief was innocent and was inside his own car.
“I went to the store real quick, but I ran out of gas,” said the man in the car.
While the man, who KRQE News 13 has chosen not to identify, was attempting to push his car, a neighbor called 911 and said he was breaking into the vehicle.
“When I saw this young man, I just put the two together,” said a neighbor in the lapel video.
“The initial call and the information given to them was an active felon was in progress,” said Albuquerque Police Officer Tanner Tixier. “We are not going to walk up to an active felony without the chance to defend ourselves.”
The officers immediately started questioning the man.
“Whose vehicle is this? Who are you?” they asked.
The man complied with officers and answered their questions.
“Well, just hang tight. If it is your car, then it’s just an error. That’s all it is. We will be out of your hair,” said police.
Then, the cops decided to help the young man out by pushing his car to the gas station to fill it up.
“It’s not that far. Here, go get the steering wheel and we will push you,” said one of the cops.
The officers pushed the man’s car down a street, followed him for another couple of blocks and helped get his car up a hill into the gas station.
“It makes everyone in the department feel good,” said Tixier.
Police said the man in the video did everything right. He answered all of their questions and did not put up a fight even though he wasn’t doing anything wrong.
APD said while it’s not a rule to have their guns drawn when they arrive at a car break-in, they often will if they can’t see whether the suspect is armed or not.