A detective with the Albuquerque Police Department has filed a lawsuit against the city of Albuquerque, the Albuquerque Police Department, and his shooter after being shot 9 times by his supervisor during a drug sting. No criminal charges were brought for this police shooting, though the detective nearly died of his injuries after losing 80% of the blood in his body and suffering punctures to the majority of his vital organs.
Detective Jacob Grant was in plainclothes and conducting a police-sanctioned $60 drug deal in the parking lot of a McDonalds in Albuquerque as part of an ongoing sting. He was shot by his Lieutenant, Greg Brachle, at a “point blank” range of less than five feet with his .45 caliber service weapon (the largest caliber handgun police are allowed to carry). After being shot twice in the chest, Grant pled with his boss, reportedly crying out, “Please stop shooting!” However, Brachle persisted, firing seven more times and nearly killing his subordinate.
The two men had been working together for over two years at the APD, allegedly having “substantial, frequent, and almost daily interactions with each other.” Grant was also wearing clothing chosen to distinguish him as the police “plant” in the operation and avoid an incident exactly like the one that occurred. Further, he was positioned behind another narcotics agent in the driver’s seat of the undercover car to signal to other officers that he was a fellow cop.
Prior to the sting operation, Lt. Brachle did not attend the briefing session at the police station, which may have left him without certain details of what was to come. He claims he did not recognize his colleague prior to administering excessive force. However, the lawsuit claims that Lt. Brachle has a history of problematic and erratic behavior. It states, “Lieutenant Brachle’s actions and omissions, coupled with his excessive zeal, undue aggression, reckless, intentional or deliberate conduct, shocks the conscience and amounts to an abuse of power.”
Despite the misidentification, Brachle’s use of excessive force was still against protocol. He approached the driver’s side door of the undercover vehicle and ripped open the door and allegedly opened fire without any verbal warning to freeze or surrender to the man inside.
The Law Offices of Michael S. Lamonsoff has over 20 years of experience defending excessive force victims and those who have been hurt by police misconduct, especially relating to police shootings. If you or a loved one has been injured by the police, call our offices today for a free consultation at (212) 962-1020