Video released by the Bernalillo County Metro Detention Center in Albuquerque shows what happened before an inmate died.
And it looks like pre-meditated murder.
But nobody has been charged.
“He’s going to kill me!” the restrained, or rather fully-restrained man predicts several times just seconds before his own death.
All while being accused of resisting.
When he’s not physically resisting, or even able to resist.
“I know you guys,” he can be heard saying with fear in his voice.
The family of New Mexico man Vicente Villela, seen on video being killed by several guards mounted on top of his head, back and body while his hands and feet are shackled, all while he is being accused of “resisting,” has been pushing for Metro Detention Center to release the video, saying it will show corrections officers did not follow policy.
Villela was arrested on burglary charges February 2.
Video footage showing what happened before his death was captured on cameras.
What it shows matches what is described in pages of documents. Vicente Villela refusing to move from on cell in the Bernalillo County Jail to another, saying he wants to stay where he is.
Eventually, a counselor shows up.
Villela, who was being verbally argumentative, admitted he was high and agrees to listen to officers.
Thirty minutes after 9 p.m. Villela appears to be complying with officers — and not resisting — when they accuse him of resisting.
“Just stop, Vicente. Just stop, dude,” a guard says before Villela goes to the ground.
A second pair of restraints are placed on Vicente, leaving him fully restrained.
“I need some water,” Villela begs.
“He had a four-point restraint system, which is basically the chains that go from the ankles up to the wrist,” Matthew Vance, the attorney representing Vicente’s family, said.
Immediately upon marching him to a cell, a guard can be heard ordering Villela to lie down while they remove his handcuffs.
He’s almost immediately accused of resisting again, even though one guard is holding him down by his head, others have knees in his back and repeatedly knee him in the sides.
“Sit on him. Now, Sandoval,” one guard orders his subordinate.
“At different points in time there’s as many as six, seven officers that are pushing on Vicente and holding him down,” Vance said.
“You’re about to get tased,” a guard says.
“I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe,” Villela cries repeatedly.
“I can’t breathe, sir.”
“He said, ‘I can’t breathe. Sir, I cannot breathe,’ and I counted eight times,” Vance told KRQE.
According to his autopsy report, Villela, 37, was suffocated.
His death was ruled a homicide.
Bernalillo County officials say the incident is still under investigation.
“I think MDC and everyone in the county who has seen the video certainly understands this is a serious situation,” Bernalillo County Communications Director Tia Bland said.
One of the corrections officers incident report blames medical personnel, saying medical staff arrived unprepared.
Although 12 officers were involved, correctional officers, sergeants, lieutenants, all who used force on a restrained inmate that resulted in his death, only two have been reassigned to administrative jobs.
None have yet to be arrested or charged with any crimes.
The Bernalillo County Metropolitan Detention Center is no stranger draconian-style torture of its inmates.
The disturbing video below, in a story we covered in 2016, shows Eric Allen, who is in charge of training other jailers on use of force at the same jail, instructing another guard to put Susie Chavez in a wrist lock because she would not be quiet.
And yet another video from 2017 shows a Bernalillo County Metropolitan Detention Center corrections officer attacking a handcuffed inmate.