Tuesday, November 27, 2012


The Mayor has his hands full.  This formal investigation of the Albuquerque Police Department by the U.S. Justice Department will consume his administration for a long time to come.  All the way to election time next year.  Sometimes, life isn't fair but he has been in a position to do something about this out of control department for three years, but he has stuck by his Chief.

Bad training and Marty Chavez's pledge to hire 200 additional officers led up to this.  Some of those new officers probably should not have been hired.  Bad quality training and bad candidates to fill a quota has come home to roost.  But, Mayor Berry could have changed Chiefs when the problems continued to grow and he could have brought in fresh blood.  He didn't.

This is a common thing among politicos.  Many of them stick by their appointees out of loyalty and friendship when they really should not.  I know as an elected official I did the same thing.  It always comes back to bite, just like when you do fire someone.

So, this whole thing will play out to an uncertain end.  We could see a new Mayor or city councillors as a result.  Or no one will pay attention.


Anonymous said...

Berry promised that he would replace Schultz when he was seeking the GOP nomination then he came under the influences of others and the Chief stayed. Such a shame because Berry's intentions at the start were good but he waned in the last two years. Around the time that Rob Perry took over as CAO. Too much delegating, not enough attention to the day to day operations of city business. I think we will see new councilors and a new Mayor next elections. The voters aren't loud until voting time and then, well, ask Romney how that goes.

Anonymous said...

This mess exists because we the citizens of Albuquerque have allowed these two buffoons--Berry and Schultz--to get away with it. They have marketed all the "great" changes made in APD except for the most obvious one: Remove Ray Schultz and his minions.

Total disgrace.

Bubba Muntzer said...

I remember the case of the guy who had a butter knife. He had some kind of mental problem. He's dead.

I remember the janitor who had his pliers in a holder on his belt. Who everybody said would never hurt a flea. He's dead.

From The Alibi:

"(Department of Justice Investigator) Perez said his office is seeking feedback and information from community members about APD conduct. Citizens can email the DOJ investigative team at community.albuquerque@usdoj.gov or call a toll-free voicemail box in English or Spanish at (855) 544-5134.

I hope all the witnesses to these and the rest of this epidemic of entirely senseless deaths is made aware that they can finally have their say.

A couple years ago I stopped in the traffic lane to pick up a friend of mine who was walking. I'd checked and the light behind me was red. It turned green and an Albuquerque cop came flying up behind me and almost ran into me. He put on his flashers and got out of his car livid, screaming, out of control with anger. There's something wrong here. People are dead for no reason.

Anonymous said...

The Daily Alibi also has a nice story about Mary Han

Anonymous said...

Oops. "Weekly Alibi"

Bubba Muntzer said...

A police officer prints his exit letter on a Facebook page called Fans of the Albuquerque Police Department in which he pretty much endorses what you say about the department.


If you click the link at the bottom it takes you to the Facebook page, where the letter is a little ways down. The comments are all in agreement with the officer who is quitting.

I've thought about my original comment and it should have included an endorsement of what you said about training and rapid hiring, too. I've also thought about what I've seen pointed out by some writers, and think I have observed myself, which is that the police brutality goes back and forth according to the political climate.

Of course, when I first read that, the range of the political climate was between what we thought of as traditional Republicans and Liberal Democrats. We used to say it swings back and forth about every 20 years. The center has shifted to the right since then and has stayed there.

Government has not ceased to use violence to pursue its aims and if anything has stepped it up, we've been subject to a relentless war waged by the Capitalist class, the surveillance state has increased, more people have guns, more states have passed shoot first ask later laws, we have a governor who proudly advertises it when she renews her permit to carry a concealed weapon.

The police know all this. It sinks in, becomes part of them. In a way you can't even blame them.

Too, we are drawn to certain professions by our psychological makeups. We imagine ourselves in that profession, first. The police department does psychological backgrounds to weed out certain types, but is there a test that will weed out people who feel small trying to make themselves feel bigger? I don't think so. That's all of us.

Anonymous said...

APD used to have an effective back ground process for its new recruits. They had to pass the MMPI, bPad, psychological interview in addition to all the standard academic and PT assessments. But all this doesn't amount to a hill of beans if the chief or deputy chiefs get to waive people on through who would otherwise be screened out.

I guarantee this happens a lot and is happening now.