ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Albuquerque police say a female victim was unintentionally shot in the leg during an officer-involved shooting last Friday.
The Albuquerque Police Department says all three officers on scene opened fire to stop an attempted carjacking. The armed suspect was hit and wounded, and so was the woman he was carjacking.
Police say the suspect, 41-year-old Lee Brandenburg, took multiple rounds to both of his legs while his female victim was shot once in the leg.
Brandenburg was wanted for skipping out on a court hearing for burglary charges.
Police say they were initially called after a bondsman paid Brandenburg a visit, and Brandenburg allegedly pointed his gun and tried to run away.
Officers got to the scene and ran after Brandenburg on San Antonio near I-25.
They say along the way, he tried and failed to carjack a man.
“He got in the car but actually the victim pulled out the key fob, so he couldn’t take the vehicle,” Ofc. Simon Drobik said.
Police caught up with the suspect in the parking lot of the New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department (RLD) where they say they witnessed Brandenburg try to pull a woman out of her SUV at gunpoint.
They say he also pointed the gun at officers, and those officers fired at Brandenburg.
“All of them though, felt that they needed to use force against this individual to stop him from carjacking this individual. That’s why they took that action,” Ofc. Drobik said.
Police say no one suffered any life-threatening injuries. They say Brandenburg and his victim are still recovering in the hospital.
“No officer ever wanted to hurt an innocent victim in the process of trying to take an armed carjacker into custody,” Ofc. Drobik said.
Police say Brandenburg has a history of property and violent crimes.
The innocent woman caught in the police shooting serves as the chair of a State Housing Commission and had a meeting at the RLD building that morning.
APD says detectives have visited her every day in the hospital. KRQE News 13 asked how she reacted after all of this.
“You know what, I think she was very happy that her life was saved by officers on scene,” Ofc. Drobik said. “She knew that she was being violently attacked, and I think she’s thankful it didn’t get any worse.”