ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico — The Albuquerque police officer facing criminal charges for a February crash that killed a 21-year-old woman has been fired, Police Chief Ray Schultz said Friday.
Schultz said Sgt. Adam Casaus was terminated after an internal probe found he violated several sections of department protocol in the late-night accident.
The Bernalillo County sheriff's office charged Casaus with vehicular homicide and great bodily injury by vehicle after authorities say an investigation found he was speeding and ran a red light when he hit an SUV driven by the sister of Ashley Browder on Feb. 10. Browder was killed and her 19-year-old sister, Lindsay Browder, was seriously injured.
Casaus has claimed he was trying to track down a drunken driver before his police cruiser slammed into the vehicle driven by Lindsay Browder. But officials said records showed no dispatchers told Casaus to look out for a drunken driver before the crash. Dispatch records obtained by various media outlets showed Casaus logged off his last call almost four hours before the crash.
The criminal complaint said Casaus entered the intersection with the lights on top of his vehicle turned on "without slowing down."
Lindsay Browder suffered a broken hip and fractured spine, according to authorities. Ashley Browder died at the scene. She was a member of an Air National Guard unit based out of Reno, Nevada
"This had been a very unfortunate and tragic event for everyone involved," Schultz said in a statement.
Schultz said he determined Casaus' dismissal was the "appropriate discipline" after reviewing the investigation by the sheriff's office and concluding the officer failed to follow several police department procedures.