Baca’s Family: Officer who shot grandmother should be charged with murder

Baca’s Family: Officer who shot grandmother should be charged with murder

Family of Grandmother shot by LCPD holds News Conference

LAS CRUCES, NM (KTSM) – The family of Amelia Baca, the 75-year-old woman shot and killed by Las Cruces Police Officers, are holding a news conference with their lawyer.

RELATED STORY: Watch: LCPD releases bodycam footage from deadly shooting of grandmother

“As a result of this senseless tragedy, the Baca family is respectfully demanding that the district attorney charge this officer with murder,” said Sam Bregman an Attorney for the Baca family.

Bregman saying that lawsuits are being filed at the state level, suing both the Las Cruces Police Department and the Officer. In addition they are suing the officer on a federal level.

“It goes without being said but I’ll say it anyway, you can’t walk up to someone’s front door when they’re having a mental health crisis they have dementia and shoot them after yelling at the for 38 seconds,” said Bregman.

During a press conference the attorneys played the video of the shooting released by the Las Cruces Police Department. The family of Amelia Baca crying as the video played.

“You never expect your mother to pass in this way, you expect your mother to pass of old age a chronic illness but not in this way,” said Perla Enriquez Baca, one of the daughters of Amelia Baca.

Saying her mother was an immigrant who came to America in her 30s and worked in the fields.

“She worked in the fields, took care of other people’s children worked really hard you know to be where she was at in that little house that she bought with a lot of effort, and for her to die in that place like that….” Perla Enriquez Baca was unable to finish her sentence as tears streamed down her face.

The shooting happened Saturday, April 18 along the 800 block of Fir Avenue around 6:30 p.m.

At the time, Las Cruces Police Department (LCPD) officials said the woman died at the scene, after being given lifesaving procedures.

The woman, identified as Amelia Baca, was suffering from dementia and had become agitated at others in the home when they called the police for help.

The attorneys for the family calling for the officer who shot Baca to be charged with murder.

Photo of Amelia Baca courtesy of Albitar Inoh

KTSM has reached out to LCPD for a statement regarding the incident, and below is what they sent us:

Below is a statement from Las Cruces City Manager Ifo Pili regarding the April 16, 2022, incident on Fir Avenue. No additional information is available at this time.

The investigation into the April 16 shooting on Fir Avenue is ongoing by the Officer-involved Incident Task Force and findings will be presented to the District Attorney’s office. Furthermore, there is pending litigation on this matter, limiting what we are able to comment on at this time.

However, I would like to provide a few comments.

First, we do not take critical incidents such as this lightly, especially when there is a loss of life. We, again, extend our sympathies to the family and friends of Amelia Baca. Any loss of life, no matter the circumstances, is tragic.

Secondly, while we are hoping for a prompt investigation, it is more important that it is done in a correct and thorough manner. All calls for service are unique and offer their own distinct set of circumstances. Witnesses are being interviewed and facts are being verified by detectives, and we do not want a potential witness – including the officers who were on scene – to formulate opinions or statements based on what they hear or see in news reports. The investigation relies on various factors including forensic and toxicology reports completed by the state and other outside agencies. 

Finally, the officer at the center of this incident is still on administrative leave. We will identify or confirm the officer’s name when the investigation allows

Statement from City Manager Ifo Pili

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