Officers shoot man who appeared to threaten them with a shovel | KOB 4

Officers shoot man who appeared to threaten them with a shovel

Nathan O’Neal
Updated: April 22, 2020 05:54 AM
Created: April 21, 2020 05:35 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- The Albuquerque Police Department released video of an officer-involved shooting Tuesday.

Valente Acosta-Bustillo was shot several times after police were called to his southeast Albuquerque home for a welfare check on March 30. 


One of his family members had called 911, saying they had not seen Acosta-Bustillo in several days, and he failed to pick up his paycheck. 

When officers arrived, they found Acosta-Bustillo in his yard with a shovel in his hand.

"Valente was found to have one confirmed felony warrant for felony aggravated assault with a deadly weapon-- at that point the call changed from a welfare check to felony arrest which officers were obligated to enforce," said Lt. Scott Norris. 

Lapel video shows Acosta-Bustillo going back into his house and refusing to comply with officers. After he refused to drop the shovel, he was tased. 

The video shows Acosta-Bustillo then lift the shovel over his head, in what appears to be a threatening manner, before he was shot. 

He eventually died at the hospital.

"We're still in the very early stages of this investigation," said APD Chief Mike Geier. "Our understanding of this incident may change as additional evidence is collected, analyzed and reviewed."

While toxicology reports are still pending, police said Acosta-Bustillo had a history of meth use, but no known history of mental health issues.

Lt. Matt Dietzel, who is part of APD's Crisis Intervention Unit, said it can be tough knowing the difference.

"Unfortunately, with this individual, we had no history of him built up," Dietzel said. "The only officers who knew anything about his history are the two that responded to that call because they responded to him at least two times in the past

Chief Geier would not say whether the officers actions fell in line with the department's policies because the incident is still under investigation.

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