Gun violence stalks ABQ
By Dan Klein
-- 335 non-fatal shootings in two months! That's about six a day.
-- From May 31 to June 20, just 20 days, Albuquerque recorded 123 non-fatal shootings.
-- Democracy and open government are dead on arrival in Tim Keller's Albuquerque.
How violent is Albuquerque? If the record number of homicides isn’t enough to convince you that Mayor Tim Keller’s version of utopia is everything but a paradise, wait until you read how many gun incidents are happening in Albuquerque.
Back on March 5, 2021, I did an IPRA request for the number of gunfire incidents from January 1, 2021, thru February 28, 2021. I did this because an inside source at APD told me that Chief Medina’s office had started tracking these numbers and that they were earth-shattering.
Finally, on July 27, 2021, I receive the one page, two sentence, report from the APD IPRA Unit. The report itself was dated April 8, 2021. For reasons that would include ineptness, laziness or a police department that is purposely trying to delay IPRA requests that would make Mayor Keller look bad, it took APD almost five months to release this information. I have asked APD why they sat on my IPRA request for four months after they had the information I requested, but as of now they have not responded. This certainly isn’t the transparency that Keller promised, but it is what we have all gotten used to. I am sure they are going to blame the pandemic, but that doesn’t explain why they had the information I requested on April 8 and they didn’t release it until July 27. Democracy and open government are dead on arrival in Albuquerque.
Maybe James Ginger and our friends at the Civil Division of the Department of Justice can do something about this clear obstruction of receiving timely public information.
The report itself states the following:
IPRA requested the number of Non-Fatal shootings in the City of Albuquerque from January 1, 2021 to February 28, 2021. There were 335 Non-Fatal Shootings from 01/01/2021 to 02/28/21. Produced on April 8, 2021
Let me break this down for you, there were almost six non-fatal shootings every day in the city of Albuquerque during the first two months of the year. That is an astonishing number and speaks to the truly violent place that our city has become. Do you wonder why you don’t feel safe for yourself and your family? It’s because bullets are flying around this town every day, multiple times a day.
A source with APD provided more recent numbers for non-fatal shootings in Albuquerque. From May 31 to June 20, just 20 days, Albuquerque recorded 123 non-fatal shootings. That number is over six non-fatal shootings per day, so the trend is clearly more gunfire every day in our city.
These numbers were broken down with the Southeast Area reporting the most at 42 shootings. The Valley Area was next with 25 (remember we reported that on July 23 the Valley Area, day shift only had three officers on duty), Southwest Area reported 23 (remember APOA President Shaun Willoughby testified that the SW Area on graveyard shift only had four officers working), the Northeast reported 14, the Foothills reported 13 and the Northwest area reported six non-fatal shootings during this twenty-day time period.
Recently Keller addressed the NAIOP, where he stated, “….and all we’ve got to do is work on those little things like public safety and education….” Either Keller is completely out of touch with reality, or he is trying hard to make us all not believe what we see with our own eyes, that crime is out of control in Albuquerque.
If only Keller and Chief Harold Medina would spend as much time trying to fix the crime problem as they do trying to cover it up, maybe we could live in a safer city.
I believe that things will only change once the violence of this city is driven home to the rich business owners who live behind locked and guarded gates and to our mayor who loves soccer. With that in mind I implore every APD officer to stop taking Chief’s Overtime assignments at United soccer games. I also ask every APD officer to stop taking Chief’s OT assignments period. These assignments are only available to the rich and well off in our community. They don’t deserve special treatment just because they can pay for it. Let them deal with the same short staffed APD that the people in Barelas and the International District deal with. When there are no cops protecting the thousands of cars at United games, and they get broken into or stolen, maybe then he will realize that the entire city deserves equal protection, not just his supporters.