DWI Case Dismissed, Driver Earlier Charged for Drunk Driving

Fallon Fischer and Gabrielle Burkhart reported on new information regarding one of the 156 dismissed DWI cases in Albuquerque, N.M. The case dismissal resulted from a federal inquiry into the Albuquerque Police Department (APD), with allegations of officers accepting bribes to drop DWI cases.

The case in question involved a 23-year-old man accused of intoxicated driving with his vehicle ablaze in November. Witnesses reported the SUV with the front afire on Central near Juan Tabo. The suspect showed signs of inebriation, with arresting officers noting red, watery eyes, an alcohol scent from his face, and slurred speech. An open vodka bottle and other open containers were discovered inside the vehicle.

The suspect scored .26 and .25 in a blood alcohol test, significantly higher than the legal limit, and was arrested. Notably, the individual was driving with a revoked license and had a 2020 DWI conviction. However, there was no booking sheet recorded for the accused—who was released from a prisoner transport center that underwent shutdown.

This case was among 156 dismissed in January by the Bernalillo County District Attorney’s Office due to the ongoing federal probe into APD. The suspect won’t face prosecution as the arresting officer, Honorio Alba, is currently under administrative leave due to the investigation. Alba is a recipient of the 2023 Mothers Against Drunk Driving Officer of the Year award for New Mexico.

Furthermore, Alba, along with officers Joshua Montano, Nelson Ortiz, Harvey Johnson, and Lt. Justin Hunt, are all on leave pending investigation. Moreover, they’ve been added to the District Attorney’s Giglio list, meaning they can’t testify as their credibility is questionable. As of yet, no criminal charges have been brought against these officers.

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