Who ordered the tampering or withholding of evidence ?

APD announced it is investigating reports of doctored lapel camera footage and is telling the City Council that they will be getting a hold of the federal prosecutors and cooperate “if necessary” when in fact they will not have a choice but to cooperate. What is at the heart of the allegations and which is the most serious is who ordered the erasing, altering or corruption of the lapel camera videos? The allegation by the former records custodian include that it was high ranking members of the APD command staff and the City Attorney’s office who ordered the erasing, alteration or withholding of evidence in civil cases filed over police officer involved shootings.

In the meantime, APD tells the City Council they are going to investigate, on their own, allegations that members of the department improperly erased, altered or corrupted video footage taken by the lapel cameras worn by officers. Our feckless Chief of Police Gordon Eden defends APD and discounts the allegations of the former records custodian by saying “We are not a television or movie production company”. Chief Eden, the City and APD do have their own production studio and they produce Duke City Blues and APD TV. The City Attorney tells the City Council “there has not been any evidence so far to substantiate these allegations”. How can there be when the investigation has not even started?

The City Council bought it hook, line and sinker commending APD for their efforts and saying the investigation by APD was appropriate. Councilors, NO it is not appropriate for APD to investigate itself when that investigation just may lead to high ranking members of the command staff, City Attorney’s office and perhaps even the Mayor’s office. The City Council did not stop to think that what APD command staff may be doing is trying to determine and identify exactly who at APD did the dirty work for them so that person can be discredited, disciplined or prosecuted. In other words, looking for a scapegoat to blame for this fiasco and perhaps cover up wrongdoing.

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Pete Dinelli was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is of Italian and Hispanic descent. He is a 1970 graduate of Del Norte High School, a 1974 graduate of Eastern New Mexico University with a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration and a 1977 graduate of St. Mary's School of Law, San Antonio, Texas. Pete has a 40 year history of community involvement and service as an elected and appointed official and as a practicing attorney in Albuquerque. Pete and his wife Betty Case Dinelli have been married since 1984 and they have two adult sons, Mark, who is an attorney and George, who is an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). Pete has been a licensed New Mexico attorney since 1978. Pete has over 27 years of municipal and state government service. Pete’s service to Albuquerque has been extensive. He has been an elected Albuquerque City Councilor, serving as Vice President. He has served as a Worker’s Compensation Judge with Statewide jurisdiction. Pete has been a prosecutor for 15 years and has served as a Bernalillo County Chief Deputy District Attorney, as an Assistant Attorney General and Assistant District Attorney and as a Deputy City Attorney. For eight years, Pete was employed with the City of Albuquerque both as a Deputy City Attorney and Chief Public Safety Officer overseeing the city departments of police, fire, 911 emergency call center and the emergency operations center. While with the City of Albuquerque Legal Department, Pete served as Director of the Safe City Strike Force and Interim Director of the 911 Emergency Operations Center. Pete’s community involvement includes being a past President of the Albuquerque Kiwanis Club, past President of the Our Lady of Fatima School Board, and Board of Directors of the Albuquerque Museum Foundation.