ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Albuquerque Police have released a high-profile witness video of a deadly skate park shooting, but it’s unclear if its release will help police or family members answer many linger questions surrounding the case
The video, which was recorded cell phone and spans about 3 and half minutes, captures a fight leading up to a shooting that took place at the Los Altos Skate Park on March 22, 2015. Six people were wounded in the shooting and 17-year old Jaquise Lewis was killed.
District Court Judge Victor Lopez ordered the city to release the video on Thursday as part of his ruling in a public records lawsuit filed by Lewis’ mother, Munah Green.
While the city says it disagrees with the decision, Albuquerque City Attorney Jessica Hernandez told News 13 Friday afternoon that the city will not seek an appeal. Albuquerque Police released the video around 4 p.m.
WATCH: Extended clip of Los Altos Skate Park shooting video posted at the bottom of this article.
While the video gives a better look at several of Lewis’ actions before the shooting, it is difficult to tell where much of the gunfire comes from. That’s because much of the video is shakey, dark and many of the actions take place a long distance away from the camera with other people in the way.
What is clear in the video is that a fist-fight broke out nearly a minute before the first shots were fired.
Video shows Jaquise Lewis was wearing a yellow t-shirt, jean shorts and a white glove on the night of the shooting. The recording begins with Lewis standing near two other people who are throwing punches at each other. Lewis is not involved in the fight.
About twenty-seconds after the recording begins, Lewis and another man can be seen trading a few punches with another man, who then backs away. A second man then approaches, and two exchange words. Much of the video isn’t focused on Lewis’ actions through. The picture appears to move around while the majority of the crowd moves into the parking lot of the skate park.
About 35 seconds into the video, Lewis appears to be moving more into the parking lot. As the fight continues, the crowd can be seen further into the parking lot where the video image gets further away and the picture gets darker.
Around the one-minute mark of the video, someone fires four shots. Muzzle flashes appear to show the shots being fired into the air.
Around one-minute and 17 seconds into the video, Lewis can be seen in the far back running toward a person, then turning around and walking towards the crowd with his arm pointed out. It’s unclear in this image if Lewis is holding a gun, however, two gunshots are fired shortly after Lewis moves out of frame with his arm pointed.
APD claims the video shows that Jaquise Lewis had a gun. Detectives believe Lewis fired that gun, however, no gun was ever recovered.
Around the one-minute and 25 seconds into the video, Lewis can be seen again, this time walking toward the entrance of the skate park. The video appears to show Lewis with his hands pointed in the air, but no gun shots can be heard. As Lewis turns around, a man’s arm can be seen sticking out from behind a man wearing a red shirt. Video shows the man fire at least 8 shots at Lewis as Lewis runs away.
APD detectives believe that the man who shot Lewis did so in self-defense. Police say they’ve spoken to that man, but he has not been charged.
Following the eight gunshots, the person recording the video can be seen running from his view of the shooting. More gunshots can be heard around two minutes and seven seconds into the video.
Up until now, APD has never released the full witness video of the shooting, claiming that it would harm their on-going investigation. The department released still-images of video during a press conference in May.
APD investigators are still looking for one additional unidentified shooter. In all, police believe four different people shot guns at Los Altos Skate Park on the night of March 22nd: Jaquise Lewis, the man who shot Lewis, and two unidentified people who police are still looking for.
Detectives say several people who were at the skate park during the shooting still have not given witness statements.
While the Albuquerque City Attorney’s Office says it’s given up the fight against releasing the records, City Attorney Jessica Hernandez says given the lawsuit and “the circumstances of the investigation,” the city chose to release the video.
“The city has nothing to hide in this case, the only reason that this video wasn’t produced right away when the plaintiff asked for is because the investigators felt very strongly that it would compromise the investigation,” said Hernandez in an interview with News 13.
Hernandez says there’s still significant concern that releasing the video will harm the investigation. Hernandez told News 13 Friday that investigators say one witness has already changed their story following the release of the still images in April.
“This was not speculative concern that APD had, there were reasons way they felt like disclosure of the full video could change what they were getting from witnesses, and investigators shouldn’t have to wonder, is this witness telling me what they actually remember or is this witness telling me what they watched on the news last night,” said Hernandez.
Update: Attorneys representing the family of Jaquise Lewis will be holding a news conference on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 to answer questions about the shooting and the newly released video. KRQE News 13 will continue to follow this developing news story with updates on-air and online at KRQE.com as soon as they become available.
EDITORS NOTE: News 13 has chosen to upload an edited, extended clip of the skate park shooting video. The video shows approximately the first two minutes of what was recorded. As Albuquerque Police have not charged anyone in this case, News 13 has chosen to blur everyone in the video expect for Jaquise Lewis, who was killed. Audio in the following clip remains unredacted.
Extended Video Clip of Shooting: