Suspect in Circle K shooting released in July following error by DA's office
October 09, 2017 06:16 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The suspect who robbed and then fired shots at people inside a Circle K store Friday morning isn’t new to violating the law, and according to the district attorney’s office he shouldn’t have even been on the streets.
But District Attorney Raul Torrez says because of a mistake made by his office, the case involving 21-year-old Eric Reddick was misidentified, overlooked and he was released.
Police say Reddick and Allyssandre Moncayo, also 21 years old, were sitting in the parking lot of the Circle K at Wyoming near Menaul Friday morning when Reddick went inside the gas station and demanded money from the clerk.
He allegedly pointed a gun at that clerk before handing over around $40 dollars. But as Reddick was trying to get away, the assistant store manager went outside to snap a photo of his vehicle.
The employee said that prompted the suspect to fire his weapon, hitting a metal portion of the convenience store’s door.
Although not being hit by the bullet directly, fragments of it hit the employee trying to take a picture, as well as another customer who was in the store at the time. The incident resulted in minor injuries for the employee, who said he was back at work on Monday.
After reviewing surveillance video taken from the gas station, police were able to identify the suspects, as well as find out that the vehicles they were in were stolen.
Moncayo admitted to police that she was at the Circle K, but denied any knowledge of a robbery.
Reddick told police he committed the crime so Moncayo wouldn’t have to resort to panhandling. He is still behind bars following the latest in a series of alleged crimes he has committed around town, ones much similar to the one he was arrested for on Friday.
NOT THE FIRST INCIDENT
Just a few months ago, Reddick was behind bars facing similar charges. He had racked up nine violent charges, from aggravated assault with a deadly weapon to leaving the scene of an accident.
He was so dangerous that after a July arrest, the district attorney’s office filed a motion for pretrial detention so that Reddick wouldn’t be released until his trial.
But that didn’t happen.
“We went back through our system to try and figure out exactly where this case went off-track,” Torrez said. “It looks like there was a mistake in the record keeping in the system.”
Torrez said Reddick’s case was mislabeled. As a result, instead of being prioritized with other 10-day cases, it was put in the wrong pile.
Because he wasn’t indicted in 10 days, a judge released him from jail and dismissed the charges.
“I’m very upset and it’s totally unacceptable for the district attorney’s office – for our office – to make that kind of mistake. In this case, the judge did exactly what we asked him to do, which was to hold this defendant,” Torrez said.
In addition to the mistake, Torrez said his office needs better resources, especially when it comes to improvements in data tracking and case management.
“We’re going to re-train folks. We’ve already started an office reorganization that’s been underway for several months,” he said. “So we’re going to look at this case and learn from the mistakes we made.”
Updated: October 09, 2017 06:16 PM
Created: October 09, 2017 03:35 PM
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