ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. —A day after the city settled with an undercover detective shot by his own lieutenant in a drug bust gone horribly wrong, lapel camera video from the incident was released.
The video shows Brachle getting out of the truck and approaching the vehicle targeted in the sting. Moments later, he opens the back door of the car and fires several shots.
Brachle appears to scream out in fear and shock after realizing he’d shot one of his own.
“I’m sorry,” Brachle screams. “I didn’t know it was you … I thought you were a bad guy.”
Grant has undergone multiple surgeries, and has been in and out of a hospital since the incident. He and the city settled the lawsuit for $6.5 million this week.
Grant said because of the settlement, all the donations given to his family will be set aside for other injured officers and charities.
The city has shelled out almost $40 million in settlements since 2010 when it comes to lawsuits facing the Albuquerque Police Department.
That does not include lawyer fees, though the city also agreed to pick up Grant’s medical expenses for the rest of his life.
Grant will also receive a medical retirement. He turned 38 this month.
“My family and I wish to express our profound gratitude to the community, my fellow APD officers, Chief (Gorden) Eden and my medical staff,” he said.
He added that he can’t change or undo what happened.
“We are hopeful that this incident will be positively used to improve law enforcement training, practices, policies and procedures,” he said.
Brachle has since retired. The Police Oversight Agency recently recommended that Brachle be fired, but he retired before that could happen.
The agency’s executive director, Edward Harness, says that Brachle made several mistakes that could have been prevented using common sense.
Brachle, Grant’s supervisor, didn’t attend a briefing for the drug bust, and responded for some reason when he found out the bust was happening.
Without knowing specific details of the operation, Brachle interjected and shot Grant who was sitting in the back of the car behind the driver.
Brachle shot Grant when Grant pulled a gun on one of the suspects. Harness says that it is standard operating procedure that a cop drive a bust car and that their partner sit behind them for safety.
Harness says Brachle had done hundreds of drug busts and should have known where Grant was sitting. He also should have known that Grant would be armed.
“It should have been evident to Brachle where Grant was in that car,” Harness said.
Brachle and Grant had worked together for over two years.
In his lapel video, Brachle was listening to radio communications of the operation where both of the suspects were being described as African-American.
Harness says that Brachle should have realized who Grant was the moment he opened the door of the car being targeted.
This is not the first shooting case involving Brachle. He was involved in a shooting at a southwest Albuquerque home in 1998. According to a lawsuit filed in 2000, an Albuquerque man was in a fight with his ex-wife and a neighbor. The suit claims Brachle shot the man as he left the house with his hands in the air. He did survive.
According to the report, the man was drunk and charged with assault on a peace officer.