Albuquerque police lieutenant resigns amid investigation into DWI unit
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A few more DWI cases have been dismissed in Bernalillo County because of a federal investigation centered on a handful of APD officers, bringing the total of dismissed cases to 198.
Five officers were placed on leave for allegedly working with a local attorney on a scheme that involved the officers not showing up to court for DWI cases. One of those officers, Lt. Justin Hunt, has resigned.
At this time, no one is facing any charges.
KOB 4 has independently connected Hunt to an attorney who is also under investigation, Thomas Clear III. The attorney’s home was raided last month.
Hunt reportedly began his career with APD in 2000. That was the same year in which he was listed as being involved in a DWI case in which Clear was the attorney also listed. That case ended up being dismissed.
Hunt and Clear were mentioned in other cases over the next few years – some were prosecuted, others dismissed.
From 2011 to 2014, Hunt and Clear’s names showed up in 18 DWI cases. 15 of those were tossed out – so five out of every six.
Hunt’s time with the DWI unit ended in 2014, but he was still with APD. In fact, last year, he was the highest-paid city employee, raking in about $250,000.
Although Clear is a criminal defense attorney, records show he represented Hunt in a divorce.
The dismissed cases involving Hunt are not part of the 199 just recently thrown out by the Bernalillo County district attorney. KOB 4 reached out to the district attorney’s office about cases involving Hunt from the past, and how those are being handled now.
A spokesperson says they are awaiting more information from Albuquerque police about the details surrounding the investigation.
KOB 4 also learned that Hunt was the officer in a DWI case from 2014 against Joaquin Noon. Court documents show Noon had three DWI cases – and his attorney for each of them was Clear.
Those cases span 11 years. One was filed in 2008, another in 2014, and the last in 2019. All three of those cases were dismissed.
The officer in the 2019 case against Noon was Honorio Alba, Jr. – one of the other officers APD recently placed on leave.