New Mexico police videos of a traffic stop show a family rushing to save their dog's life, but end up being held at gunpoint by officers.
The encounter, which took place in Bernalillo, began when the Albrecht family's pet labradoodle Stella followed a cat into traffic. When Tara, the mother of the household, was carrying in food inside their Rio Rancho house for dinner, she realized the terrible reality that Stella was hit by a car.
Immediately, the entire family rushed to get Stella the help she needed. When they hopped into their vehicle, they sped off with Tara holding Stella in the passenger seat, her husband William driving and their teenage son supporting from the backseat.
William recalled, "We jumped in the car and started trying to get to the E.R. as fast as we could to try to save her life."
However, as he was navigating 550 through Bernalillo to the closest animal emergency hospital, a police cruiser pulled the family's car over.
What happened next was surprising. What was supposed to be a stop for a speeding turn transformed into a felony stop.
William was ordered commands by the officer, which resulted in him getting out of the vehicle and down on his knees as he held his hands up. Three backup police officers arrived, and Tara and her 16-year-old son were held at gunpoint, too. William was eventually handcuffed.
When their son attempted to point to the direction of his mother and Stella, who was bleeding from her head, his actions resulted in him being detained.
Further attempts by the family members to draw attention to the dog's worsening state were outright dismissed.
Tara captured parts of the incident on her cell phone camera.
The first officer at the scene never attempted to walk up to the car to discover the reason for William's supposed reckless driving nor was a citation given. A full video of the pursuit doesn't exist.
Unfortunately, Stella didn't make it.
The occurrence is being considered by some as an excessive use of force. The Albrecht family will likely file a lawsuit.