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Families of AZ Shooting Victims Seek Prosecutor Transparency

The families of Arizona people shot by local police gathered Tuesday morning to ask the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office to be more transparent in investigations of use of force, as records have either not been released after years or were heavily redacted, News From The States reports. “We feel that justice only works for the police,” said Maria Martinez, aunt of 15-year-old Juan Carlos Bojorquez, who was fatally shot by Glendale, Ariz., police on July 6, 2022. “Apparently, 11 bullets into a 15-year-old child is justifiable.” Martinez and others decried the slow process through which the prosecutor's office investigates police use of force and how families are left waiting for answers. Martinez noted that it has been over a year since the shooting and the family has not received all the body camera footage, the police reports or even the final investigation report. Prosecutors and the Buckeye Police Department investigated the shooting and determined that no charges would be filed against the officer who shot Bojorquez. 


Glendale police have not disclosed how many times Bojorquez was shot, but have said that the officer involved is still employed with the department.  In a response to questions from the Arizona Mirror, a prosecutor's spokesperson said that the audio and video recordings from the shooting are still “in the queue for processing” to undergo necessary redactions. The spokesperson said the county attorney's office is not the main investigatory agency for police use of force but reviews investigations submitted by law enforcement agencies to decide whether to file charges. The prosecutor's office said it received the public record request related to Bojorquez only last week “Requests that seek this volume of records typically take months, not weeks, to process to ensure that this Office complies with Arizona Public Records Law, including the need to redact or withhold sealed records, personally identifiable information (like dates of birth, social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, and some addresses), legally privileged records, other privacy-related information, and criminal history information,” the spokesperson said. 

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