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Albuquerque Is A Sanctuary City For Liars

Albuquerque Is A Sanctuary City For Liars

Under Mayor Richard Berry's leadership, Albuquerque is a sanctuary city – FOR LIARS!

Mayor Richard Berry denies that Albuquerque is a sanctuary city. He’s wrong. Under his leadership, Albuquerque is a sanctuary city – FOR LIARS!

The Civilian Police Oversight Agency has now finished its investigation into accusations that APD Officer Fred Duran and APD Director of Communications Celina Espinoza lied in statements about 10-year-old murder victim, Victoria Martens.

Espinoza and Duran lied about a Child, Youth and Family Department hotline referral accusing an unknown male of attempting to kiss Victoria against her will five months before her murder. They said detectives spoke to Victoria and that Victoria denied anything had occurred. No APD detectives, or anyone else from the department every spoke to Victoria.


The lies are sickening. The lies show an APD command staff that is beyond sick, that is beyond hopeless and that must be immediately fired. The lies show utter and complete contempt for every police officer and for every resident of this city. The lies are vile, and the people who made them up and repeated them are vile.

The lies are pure evil.

Espinoza and Duran lied to explain why there were no police reports and that they couldn’t name the detectives because they were working with the FBI. Did these two conspire to make their lies about Victoria airtight so no one could know the truth: that APD never spoke to Victoria that day?

Espinoza and Duran lied about Victoria, and they don’t seem to care. These sick people put lies into Victoria’s lifeless mouth. Were their lies used to cover up for Chief Gorden Eden’s failure to draft policies to protect children like Victoria? Did they care more about Eden’s political career than the safety of our children and the reputation of our police department?

The CPOA investigation exposed that detectives in APD Crimes Against Children Unit told Duran and Eden in December 2016 that they never responded to the CYFD referral from March 2016.

Those same CACU detectives told Espinoza that both she and Duran were completely wrong in their statements to the Albuquerque Journal in January 2017. What did Espinoza do when she was told her statements were lies? She says she immediately notified Eden, looking for direction on how to handle it. What did Eden do? As far as we know, NOTHING.

Eden didn’t order an investigation into why such flagrant lies were told. Eden didn’t remove Duran and Espinoza from their positions. Eden didn’t order that all CYFD referrals that could be criminal in nature be directed to the 911 dispatch center. Eden did nothing.

Why would Eden ignore his command staff when they told him they were caught lying about a child who was murdered? Remember, in December 2016 Eden knew that because he never drafted a policy to handle CYFD allegations of criminal activity to the 911 dispatch center, APD officers never were dispatched to check on Victoria.

Could Eden have been directly involved in this conspiracy to cover up? This must be answered. The CPOA and the Inspector General must continue this investigation and bring Eden and other members of his command staff in for formal interviews.

We must know the truth; Victoria’s truth deserves to be told.

Eden’s prior knowledge of the truth, his silence after Espinoza told him of the lies, and the lies themselves, call into question his leadership and his ethics. The lies that were crafted stated that none of the officers who checked on Victoria could be publicly identified because they were now working with the FBI, and that no police reports were written because of Fourth and Eighth Amendment rights.

They gave quotes from Victoria and her mother that could never be verified.

These are deep lies that I doubt Duran and Espinoza could have crafted on their own. Who in APD’s command would have known that officers in federal task forces could not be publicly identified? Eden was a fed (U.S. Marshal); he knew. Other high-ranking members of his command staff worked with the feds also.

How deep does this conspiracy of lies go within APD’s command staff? We need to know.

Richard Berry should immediately place Eden, Duran and Espinoza on administrative leave pending a full investigation by the Inspector General. But Berry protects liars, he doesn’t expose them.

Since Berry will do nothing, the city council should go into emergency meeting and order the IG to investigate. They should take a vote of no confidence in Eden. They should demand that Berry place all three on administrative leave. But our city council has no courage, they will not stand up for a dead child.

And what about the mayoral candidates? Only one of them, Michelle Garcia Holmes, has had the courage to demand Eden’s immediate firing. One of them is our future mayor.

If Eden had an ounce of ethics and morality in his body, he would resign. But he doesn’t, so he won’t.

Since our elected leaders will not act in Victoria’s memory, I urge all of you to stand up for her. Flood Berry’s and the city council phone lines with demands that Eden be placed on leave pending a full investigation.

Whenever Berry, Eden, Espinoza, Duran and the city council members appear in public, demand answers as to why APD command purposely lied about Victoria. Embarrass these people. Demand action from them.

APD has good officers who will not lie. The CACU detectives should be publicly commended for stepping forward to confront lies by their own command staff. Those are the people who should be running APD.

Use your voices and demand that Eden, Espinoza, Duran and any other police employee involved in lying about Victoria be disciplined. Albuquerque, if these liars are allowed to continue cashing our paychecks then this entire town is sick and we get what we deserve.

Victoria Martens’ memory needs heroes; are you brave enough to confront the liars?

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Dan Klein

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

Latest posts by Dan Klein (see all)


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  • […] Freistätte für Lügner Berry bestreitet dies, obwohl – wie Dan Klein in ABQ Free Press schreibt – zwei Beamte nach einer Untersuchung der Lüge überführt wurden. Auch der City Council macht […]

  • Larissa Lewis
    August 11, 2017, 9:23 am

    Lying has been SOP for APD looooong before Berry and Eden.
    How about the truth told about the Tak and Pung Yi murders (12-07)??
    How about Tera Chavez murder?
    How about Mary Han?
    How about Mary Hawkes?
    And how about my son. UNM Engineering student Kerry Lewis’ murder(7-10-09)
    So many more serious lies….

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Dennis Domrzalski is managing editor of ABQ Free Press. Reach him at dennis@freeabq.com.

Latest posts by Dennis Domrzalski (see all)