ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Derick Garcia, 32, of Albuquerque, has been charged in a criminal complaint with assault on a federal officer, being a felon in possession of a firearm, and discharging a firearm during a crime of violence. Garcia is scheduled for an initial appearance in federal court on Dec. 15 at 9:28 a.m.
According to a criminal complaint, on Dec. 11 at 7:20 a.m., Garcia allegedly shot a special agent of the FBI as the agent was in the process of executing a search warrant on the premises. The agent was wearing a marked vest identifying him as an FBI agent, and agents had knocked, identified themselves as FBI, and announced that they had a warrant. The injured agent was transported to the University of New Mexico Hospital for care.
“On behalf of the Department of Justice, I want to extend to the injured federal agent our best wishes for a speedy and full recovery. This incident serves as a stark reminder of the dangers our federal, state and local law enforcement officers face on a daily basis in Albuquerque, and of the pressing need to confront the subculture of violence that is taking root in our city. Officers should be able to perform their duties without fear of becoming victims of potentially deadly gun violence in Albuquerque. We remain committed to prosecuting dangerous crime whenever and wherever it presents itself to make clear that such actions are not acceptable in Albuquerque and the District of New Mexico.”
“Law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every day to keep our communities safe,” said James C. Langenberg, Special Agent in Charge for the FBI’s Albuquerque Field Office. “FBI special agents courageously accept the danger as part of their job. Fortunately, our agent who was shot on Friday while performing his duty is out of the hospital and recovering. His bravery is an inspiration to all of us at the FBI who have sworn an oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution and defend the American people, regardless of the sacrifices that may be asked of us.”
A complaint is only an allegation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, Garcia faces up to 20 years in prison.
The FBI investigated this case. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Holland S. Kastrin and Sarah Mease are prosecuting the case.