Paseo road rage incident deemed ‘justifiable’ by APD. Here’s why.

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — “You have different categories of homicide. One is justifiable, and the other is not – and we commonly refer to that as murder.”

Retired Albuquerque Police Commander and KOB 4 safety expert Paul Szych said the line between “justifiable” and “murder” can be thin.

Take what happened Monday. Albuquerque police blocked the road at Paseo and Eagle Ranch Road after a person hit a man with their car.

That man later died. Now, police are investigating his death as a “justifiable homicide”.

“In this case, we’re talking about defending their life. It’s really going to come down to whether or not it was an imminent threat. Also, whether it was reasonable to carry out such an action to defeat that imminent threat,” Szych said.

According to APD, the driver ran over the man after the man pulled a gun out. This allegedly happened after a road rage incident.

Szych said officers must decide what makes a homicide “justifiable”.

“Some of the factors that could also come into play. It would be what type of witnesses you have. You have people that are willing to step forward and tell the story to you,” he said.

He said they also consider what the alleged killer says and, again, whether they really were afraid for their life.

“We don’t often think about our car being a little bit of a safer option against maybe somebody who’s presented a firearm and they, they’re aiming a weapon at you. But it is,” he said about the driver staying in the car instead of engaging the pedestrian outside of the vehicle.

While the investigation continues, Szych said there’s a lot you can do to deescalate road rage incidents, but there’s one major thing he always shares.

“My advice involving road rage is you just don’t participate in it; you literally do everything you can to ignore that other person.”

No arrests have been made in this case, according to APD.