More homicides, fewer cops
By Dan Klein
-- Only 364 cops available to handle your 911 calls. That over three shifts seven days a week.
-- APD is on track to going back to the R. J. Berry years of less than 900 cops. Folks, fewer cops equal more crime. It’s that simple.
In the last week Albuquerque added two more names to the ever-growing list of homicides in our city. The first was a woman who was found shot to death at the Courtyard Apartments near San Pedro and Montgomery. The second involved a person found shot to death at the Sierra Vista Apartments near Eubank and Montgomery. There was another person found shot at Oak and Central, APD made it a homicide call out as the person was not expected to live, but as of today APD has not provided any further updates as to the status of this victim.
This brings the number of homicides in 2021 to 83.
Contrast the rising number of homicides with the declining number of APD officers. In March of 2021 APD announced that they had 998 sworn officers. Since that announcement APD staffing has fallen at an alarming rate. A recent review of payroll records shows only 940 sworn officers with APD, a handful of these are lateral officers who just hired on and are still in training. That mean a reduction in force of 58 officers in only four months.
APD is scheduled to start another academy class in August, but sources within APD have reported that in recent weeks at least 10 future cadets have told APD they are going elsewhere for work. As of now it is unknown just how many cadets APD will be able to seat for the upcoming class.
In June, APD produced their list for the upcoming Field Services Bureau bid, to take effect August 28, 2021. This list showed 21 lieutenants, 60 sergeants, 327 patrolmen 1st class and 37 patrolmen 2nd class as participating. That means, if none of these patrolmen quit, retire or get fired in the next month, there will be 364 officers in uniform to handle your 911 calls. This is an extraordinarily low number for a city our size.
To put this in perspective, these 364 officers will be split up to manage all three shifts and six area commands, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This includes officers in training, in court, on vacation and on days off. It is no wonder that APOA President Shaun Willoughby testified in court recently that the Southwest Area only had 4 officers working on graveyard. The Southwest Area encompasses everything south of I-40 and west of the Rio Grande. An area that probably contains tens of thousands of citizens in some of the most crime-ridden areas of Albuquerque had only four officers to patrol and keep you safe. This explains why citizens are continually complaining about there being long delays in response to 911 calls.
If not reversed, APD is on track to going back to the R. J. Berry years of less than 900 cops. Folks, fewer cops equal more crime. It’s that simple.
ABQREPORT good friend, Charles Arasim posted this clip to his YouTube channel of APD Chief Harold Medina addressing the “rumors” of approximately 50 officers retiring soon. The Daily 49 - Friday, July 16th, 2021 - YouTube
In this video briefing Medina downplays the talk of these officers leaving and promises to stay on top of it and let the troops know what happens. What happened is this, Medina knows he is hemorrhaging officers and as of now he and Mayor Keller can do nothing to stop it. From June to July APD lost 22 officers, so clearly the rumors are true. Medina is just not wanting anyone to go looking and to ask questions because he doesn’t want to tell you that by December APD could very well back in the 800s for staffing.
Which leads me to my final point. Over and over Keller and Medina are telling the public that property crime is down. What they need to say is “reported” property crime is down. Albuquerque citizens have just given up on calling APD to report their stolen items. Why bother? They will have to wait hours for an officer to arrive, if they even get dispatched. The officer will take a report and as our friends at the Albuquerque Journal found out, APD officers don’t care that you have the offender on you home security camera. Why don’t they care? Because they know there are no detectives to do follow-up investigations. All that will happen when you report that someone has stolen your lawnmower out of your garage, or vandalized your home, or taken your purse from your car is that your homeowners or car insurance will go up. That’s why many citizens don’t bother to report their crimes to APD, because there is no hope that anything will be done.
Rest assured that if any of those 364 officers do as much as eat in their patrol car or say a curse word privately to themselves, the approximately 100 officers and supervisors assigned to reviewing all body cameras will catch those infractions and make those officers pay dearly. The joke at APD is Medina sends out discipline target letters like he would send out Christmas cards. Oh, and if those 100 officers and supervisors miss an infraction don’t worry, APD has now hired an outside agency to review their work.
When China takes over Albuquerque, we will make the transition to a communist state very easy, because we are already there. Welcome to Tim Keller’s utopia. Hey, but don’t worry, Keller is going to build you a soccer stadium. Just don’t leave your valuables in your car when you go watch United play.