Police Officer Richard W. Smith, Jr.

Police Officer Richard W. Smith, Jr.

Albuquerque Police Department, New Mexico

End of Watch Thursday, August 18, 2005

Richard W. Smith, Jr.

Police Officer Richard Smith and Police Officer Michael King were shot and killed while attempting to take a man into custody for a mental health evaluation.

The officers located the man at an address near the intersection of Ash Street SE and Gold Avenue SE. They were fired upon immediately upon arriving at the scene. Officer King was killed instantly, Officer Smith was transported to the University of New Mexico Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds.

The suspect fled the scene on a motorcycle but was located approximately two hours later. He was injured when the motorcycle crashed as officers attempted to stop him. The suspect was charged with murdering Officer King and Officer Smith. He was also charged with two murders that had been committed earlier in the evening at a local motorcycle store at a fifth murder of a New Mexico Department of Transportation worker that had occurred that morning.

The suspect, who suffers from paranoid schizophrenia, was later found incompetent to stand trial. He was sentenced to 179 years in a state mental institution. If he is ever found competent preparations for a trial will begin.

Officer Smith had served with the Albuquerque Police Department for 22 years. He is survived by his wife and daughter.


  • Age 46
  • Tour 22 years
  • Badge 193

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; Revolver
  • Offender Charged with five counts of murder

Most Recent Reflection

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Still think about you regularly 14 years after an expired registration and $13 in unpaid fines caused our paths to cross. Wish I'd spent the ride out west talking to you more instead of just being angry at the situation. But the words we did share gave me a really good idea of who you were. Definitely someone I would want on my side. Then a few months later I was sitting on the couch watching tv a few houses up the street when I heard the shots, and the sirens. Then I saw your picture in the Journal and my heart just sank. I'm thankful I got to know you just a little bit on that 30 min ride out west in the back of your squad car 14 years ago. I had a few before and a few after, but thats the only one I've never had any regrets about. RIP Officer Smith, you are not forgotten.

A kid who made a few bad choices

August 4, 2018

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