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Klein: APD’s Lies About Victoria Are Sickening

Klein: APD’s Lies About Victoria Are Sickening

Victoria Continues To Be Abused

You remember Victoria Martens, don’t you?

The little girl on the West Side of Albuquerque who investigators believe was sexually abused for months prior to her death. Victoria was drugged, raped and strangled. The accused offenders are her mother, Michelle Martens, and two others. After she was dead, this gruesome trio is accused of dismembering Victoria’s body and then burning it in the bathtub of their apartment. Victoria was 10 years old.

But Victoria continues to be abused. This time it is by the Albuquerque Police Department, under the command of Chief Gorden Eden. This is my police department, and what they have done sickens me.

APD’s two public information people, civilian Celina Espinoza and police officer Fred Duran, have made public comments to the media that are so grossly untruthful about Victoria and the events that lead to her murder that they should be relieved of their duties.

These two APD employees started butchering Victoria’s reputation just months after her murder. Albuquerque Journal reporter Elise Kaplan discovered that on March 28, 2016, the New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department received an anonymous call alleging that a man was trying to force himself onto Victoria to kiss her. CYFD recognized that a criminal offense may have happened. They followed state law and policy and referred this incident to APD to investigate. Possible crimes are only investigated by police.

Did APD investigate this referral?

This is when we find out what type of police command Eden leads. Does he lead a department that is willing to accept responsibility? A department that shows professionalism, integrity and compassion by admitting mistakes and being honest to the public they serve?

Or is Eden leading a command staff that will do anything they can to protect their own image? A command staff that is so self-serving that they will create stories that in effect hack to pieces the reputation of a small child, basically blaming Victoria for her own demise?

Based upon the Journal’s investigation we find out that evil not only resided in Victoria’s house, it also is alive and well, living on the fifth floor (Chief’s Office) of the Albuquerque Police Department.

The Journal recently posted three audio tapes of interviews that Kaplan did in January 2017 with APD Officer Duran and PIO Espinoza. I urge you to go to the Journal’s website and listen for yourself.

The truth is, APD never responded, never spoke with Victoria and Michelle Martens. APD never went.

But that isn’t what Duran told Kaplan in a rambling 17-minute interview. He created a complex story, stating that APD detectives spoke to Michelle and Victoria Martens. He said Michelle Martens told the detectives that the boyfriend tried to kiss Victoria and Michelle told him to leave.

Duran then states the following, “Victoria told us (APD detectives) it (the kissing incident) never happened.” He then goes on to complain that people lie to the police all the time and there is nothing they can do about it.

But APD never spoke to Victoria. Why did Duran create a story to put into the mouth of a dead child?  Isn’t that victim-blaming? This is disgusting, sickening, horrible.

Duran, and Espinoza, in the second interview then try to cloud the entire issue by blaming CYFD for not developing “probable cause.” CYFD has no authority to investigate crimes; they are not the police.

APD never spoke to Victoria nor to Michelle. Why did Duran say they did?

Did Duran do this on his own? Or did someone else in APD command staff conspire with Duran to create the lies and put false statements in a dead girl’s mouth? I repeatedly asked Espinoza that question, and she never answered.

Oddly, in the second interview Espinoza said that APD did not respond to the referral because APD didn’t consider it a crime. This brief moment of honesty disappears as Espinoza spins and spins about why attempting to kiss someone against their wishes is not a crime.

Let me clear this up, the crime is assault. And it’s not up to CYFD to determine probable cause; it is up to the police department to do so. But when they don’t bother to even respond, it clearly shows they didn’t care.

Had APD responded they might have discovered the hell that Victoria was living through. By not going, APD failed. Victoria’s sentence was secure. She never had a chance.

The third interview has Kaplan speaking to both Espinoza and Duran. Apparently, Espinoza now has been told to back Duran’s obviously false stories. Espinoza states, “We (APD detectives) went and talked to the mom (Michelle) and to the little girl (Victoria) and there was nothing to report.”

When Kaplan asks for the names of the detectives who responded and spoke to Victoria and Michelle, Duran replies, “Why do you want to know the detectives’ names? They work a lot of high profile cases with the FBI. So if their names are released that could compromise other cases.”

What a bunch of lying horseshit! Duran and Espinoza just start saying anything to keep Kaplan from discovering the truth, APD NEVER RESPONDED TO THE MARCH 28, 2016 VICTORIA MARTENS REFERRAL. APD NEVER SPOKE TO ANYONE.

It tells Albuquerque exactly what kind of police command staff we have when they so easily make up stories. These people are despicable.

But let me take this a step or two further. Albuquerque itself has become full of despicable people. The Journal and ABQ Free Press, in March 2017, exposed that APD had completely and totally lied about everything regarding the March 28 referral from CYFD. And no one in Albuquerque appears to care.

All those people who showed up at the memorial service for Victoria, sending off their balloons and feeling good about themselves, from Mayor Richard Berry, the City Council, business leaders, community leaders, APD command staff, and just normal citizens, you make me sick. You express mock outrage to make yourself feel good, but when you are told that the people who were supposed to protect Victoria failed her and then created a complex series obviously false stories about it, you don’t care.

Why hasn’t Berry placed Espinoza and Duran on leave? Or ordered a full investigation to find out who in APD command ordered these lies? Because R.J. doesn’t care. This is the same reason Eden hasn’t ordered an investigation; he wants to protect his image and that of his buddies in APD command. The City Council doesn’t care. No one cares. That makes this a very sick town.

Victoria Martens lived a miserable life and died a horrible death. And even in death cowards at APD Command, instead of being honest, attempted to blame her for her own demise.

Victoria’s reputation in death is being hacked to pieces by lies created by police command staff and a mayor and City Council who don’t care. Victoria is being victimized again, but this time by Albuquerque.

Because Albuquerque doesn’t care, we get the town and police department we deserve. Welcome to the hell we have created.

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Dan Klein

Dan Klein is a retired Albuquerque police sergeant. Reach him via Facebook and Twitter via @dankleinabq.

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  • libertydw
    June 5, 2017, 11:19 pm

    I’m ashamed of APD & CFY this little girl had no chance when neither agency didn’t come through, can you really sleep at night knowing you dropped the ball and this sweet angel was put through a horrific crime. Bless her may she RIP.

    • Dominic Martinez@libertydw
      June 6, 2017, 11:30 am

      Truly horrific. Reading this confirms just how corrupt these people are. Also, just how far they will go to cover there own asses and try to make the community believe they are doing there job. In what way, if any, can we put a stop to this corruption?

  • Susy Crandall
    June 6, 2017, 1:14 pm

    There really are people and institutions made up of people, who respond with hatred in the presence of goodness and would destroy the good insofar as it is in their power to do so. They do this not with conscious malice but blindly, lacking awareness of their own evil — indeed, seeking to avoid any such awareness. As has been described of the devil in religious literature, they hate the light and instinctively will do anything to avoid it, including attempting to extinguish it. They will destroy the light in their own children and in all other beings subject to their power.

    Evil people hate the light because it reveals themselves to themselves. They hate goodness because it reveals their badness; they hate love because it reveals their laziness. They will destroy the light, the goodness, the love in order to avoid the pain of such self-awareness. My second conclusion, then, is that evil is laziness carried to its ultimate, extraordinary extreme. As I have defined it, love is the antithesis of laziness. Ordinary laziness is a passive failure to love. Some ordinarily lazy people may not lift a finger to extend themselves unless they are compelled to do so. Their being is a manifestation of nonlove; still, they are not evil.

    Truly evil people, on the other hand, actively rather than passively avoid extending themselves. They will take any action in their power to protect their own laziness, to preserve the integrity of their sick self. Rather than nurturing others, they will actually destroy others in this cause. If necessary, they will even kill to escape the pain of their own spiritual growth. As the integrity of their sick self is threatened by the spiritual health of those around them, they will seek by all manner of means to crush and demolish the spiritual health that may exist near them.

    I define evil, then, as the exercise of political power — that is, the imposition of one’s will upon others by overt or covert coercion — in order to avoid extending one’s self for the purpose of nurturing spiritual growth. Ordinary laziness is nonlove; evil is antilove.

    M. Scott Peck Psychiatrist & author

  • Kim Jenkins
    June 6, 2017, 10:08 pm

    Thank you for this very well written account of APD’s failure to protect a little girl. It’s sad they won’t accept responsibility for this. This is proof that cops lie…especially to cover their own asses. There are good cops. Great cops even but they look out for their own, regardless.

  • Renee
    June 7, 2017, 4:21 pm

    The article states that APD Command, instead of being honest, attempted to blame Victoria for her own demise but the article never states in what way they did attempted to defame her. The only thing I saw was APD botching up a previous report and then lying to cover it up, stating they I tervieqed her when they didn’t then recanting that statement when they were caught lying. Its horrible that they failed her in that way but I don’t think that’s making her look responsible but rather them attempting to save their own asses.

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