Where are all the Officers Going?
Daniel Klein - journalist/contributor Posted: December 24, 2021 11:30 AM
APD has lost another 7 officers in the last 2 weeks. The number of sworn officers is now 911. This number does include all commanders. The sworn status of several of these commanders is still unanswered. Are they certified law enforcement officers in the state of New Mexico? APD isn’t saying. We counted them, but if you know the answer and they aren’t sworn in New Mexico please let me know.
APD has now seated 48 cadets, I am not sure if the academy has started yet, but 48 is a strong number that would allow APD to begin the next academy. Academy classes take 6 months, so those cadets that make it to graduation won’t be sworn officers until June 2022. Clearly APD manpower issues are having an effect on fighting crime, we continue to lose more officers than we hire.
The next manpower report, in two weeks, should reflect those APD officers who retired on December 31, 2021. I am being told there will be a substantial drop in APD manpower with the next list. This drop in sworn officers had forced APD to redo the field services officers bid in an attempt to move officers around so that uniform patrol can maintain around 375 officers. That is a very low number of 911 responders for a city the size of Albuquerque. Once you spread these officers across 7 days and 24 hours you can see just how little police protection Albuquerque has.
An interesting side note, media reports state that APD has around 10% of it’s sworn officers devoted to the DOJ CASA agreement. If this is true that means that APD has 90 sworn officers monitoring the actions of 375 sworn officers (force issues mainly occur with uniform patrol officers / 911 responders). So it begs the question why is APD still far behind in force review? Are they nitpicking too many cases, thus causing serious issues to go unaddressed in a timely manner? This is an important question to answer if Albuquerque is ever going to get rid of the DOJ.
In a perfect example of “do as I say, not as I do” the Department of Justice announced last week that some of their ICE agents would start a pilot program of wearing body cameras. This is something APD has done for a decade, yet the DOJ is just now thinking that their officers should wear cameras. Knowing this, why does anyone believe the DOJ is capable of reforming any police department when they refuse to lead and reform themselves?