Tuesday, February 03, 2015

APD Shell Game

Retired APD Sergeant Dan Klein sent this to me today.  It is certainly worth using in its entirety.

"KOAT reports that APD Academy has 21 cadets, down from 26.  This is probably accurate.

KOAT goes on to report that APD has 935 sworn officers.  APD Tanner Tixier stated that APD lost around 40 officers at the end of 2014.

Why does the media just accept APD numbers without asking for proof?

Attorney Tom Grover said that at the APOA vs PERA court hearing on December 23, 2014 APD stated that they had far less than 900 officers.  On January 16 2015 on 770 KKOB Richard Berry stated that APD had 903 officers.  Now on February 2, 2015, two weeks later, we are told by APD that they have 935 officers.  APD's numbers don't make any sense, they contradict themselves over the last 45 days.  Add to this APD Tanner Tixier stating that APD lost almost 40 officers at the end of 2014 and the current academy class is still in session.  These numbers APD is providing don't make any sense.  Just look at Berry's numbers compared with Tanner Tixier numbers today.  APD would have grown by 32 officers in just 2 weeks.  I don't think so, do you?

Why can't we get a straight answer from APD and Berry.  In just over a month APD cries wolf that they are going to lose all sorts of cops, Yet they go to the media and say they are very close to max staffing (1,000 officers).  Why hasn't the media picked up all of these different numbers and point out how they don't make sense and demand, on air, an accurate accounting of all APD officers?  And where, exactly are they assigned?

I have lost faith in what Berry and APD say.  Notice how I say APD, we never see Eden or any command staff member making these announcements.  They dump it on Tanner and Simon. And poor Tanner he has to go on TV and say that APD has 935 officers, that over half are answering calls for service and that "APD is real busy" so citizens will just have to wait for Priority 2 and 3 calls but not for Priority 1.  This is exactly the opposite from what the media and city council have reported.  Yet Tanner doesn't get confronted with the actual facts and the citizens don't get the real story.

I believe the real story is APD has a lot of closet positions for police officers who don't want to do uniform patrol.  That APD has lots of calls, including priority 1, holding at any given time and that APD has very few officers working Field Services with a primary function as call takers (SWAT, K9, Horse Mounted don't take calls for service, they don't make arrests and they don't write reports).  The only officers who actually count in uniform patrol are the officers working out of each area command taking dispatch calls.  The retired rehires who work duplicating APS Police duties in schools do not count.   The Street Cop needs the real story to come out, they are the blue knights who are stretched thin with no support.

Can someone get a straight answer from Berry and APD on exactly how many full time sworn police officers we currently have and where are they assigned.  Are they counting cadets?  Are they counting part timers.  APD / Berry need to prove their numbers, because their statements over the last 45 days just don't make any sense.  They need to be put on the spot and asked to explain why the different numbers and for them to prove the real numbers on the date they are asked.

It's not that hard.  Chief Polisar, Chief Galvin and Chief Schultz knew exactly how many officers they had, and where they were working, everyday.  I am sure the same is true for Chief Eden, but for some reason he doesn't want to tell the public / media.  Why?  What are they hiding?  These are our tax dollars, we deserve to know the truth and not spin.

APD also needs to prove their statement that Priority 1 calls are not holding.  And just how long are Priority 2 and 3 calls holding?  I don't trust this administration, their own statements contradict themselves and they never provide proof.  Do you trust their numbers?  If you don't, then you shouldn't report them without proof."


Anonymous said...

The total number of sworn police officers at APD may be 935 or even less but that is not the biggest problem. The biggest problem is that less than half, approximately 430 officers are actually in uniform, taking calls for service and patrolling the streets of Albuquerque. (You can confirm this by asking the number of officers who put in bids for shifts.) These 430 officers are spread out over 3 eight hour shifts, (Day, Night and Grave Yard). 911 processes and takes between 1.5 and 1.7 million calls for service a year which are referred to APD, so you have only 430 sworn officers doing "street work" responding to all the calls. Many of the specialized units, which there are about 30, including SWAT, do NOT take any calls for service. Also, your command staff of Commanders, Lts, and many Sgts do not take calls for service.

APD's response times to priority 1 calls, which includes all violent crimes, is now significantly up exceeding the national averages and standards by minutes. The delay in responding to priority one calls, especially domestic violence cases, usually results in someone getting killed. There needs to be a complete reorganization and streamlining of APD to get more uniforms officers on the street to patrol.

Anonymous said...

To the comment about pulling the number of officers in bids for shifts. This would be the correct course of action but APD refuses to release these documents. I believe KRQE is taking the City and APD to court to release daily lineups.

Why won't Mr. Transparency Berry and Chief Eden release a document that the public deserves to have? Past administrations didn't hide this, so why are they?

Anonymous said...

The reason you won't get a verified number of officers ar APD is because no one who has spoken can remember the last lie they told about numbers. Every two weeks the city cuts Paychecks for APD but no one in this bloated administration can count. Remember Robs comment about how we need to retain experienced officers. I guess none of them can count! They would not have made past the third grade in Susannas world.

Bubba Muntzer said...

An internet search for police officers per capita seems to show Albuquerque as pretty low relative to the nation at large and especially to larger cities. (I don't know precisely what kind of police these data show, but assume they are reported fairly consistently from department to department)

I see a national average of 24 police per 10,000 people. Cities range from 29 in Indianapolis to 61 for Washington, DC. Typically, big cities are in the 40s (Chicago 44, New York 41).

Albuquerque is given as 18 per 10k citizens, but that's using "999 total officers."

Using the 935 number and an Albuquerque population of 545,852, I myself come up with 17 per 10,000. (545,852 divided by 10,000 = 54.5852, and 935 divided by 54.5852 = 17.129)

The former officer and the other commenter may be able to decipher the statistics more accurately.

It looked to me like they are based on FBI statistics. Apparently local departments report numbers of officers just like they do their crime statistics. I you had some time you could decipher the FBIs web site and see it firsthand.

I settled on this site for comparison sake:


It gives some big cities and if you type Albuquerque into the box it gives ours. Note that there are figures given for several categories of police. I'm using the "officers per 10K residents" figures.

For nationwide I used this, which compares the US to other countries:


If Albuquerque is really as low in cops as my comment suggests -- less than half that of bigger cities -- and less than the nation as a whole, which includes rural areas, retirement villages, places where people can't even go outdoors most of the year, this is pretty significant. It also might help explain why our police are so quick on the draw.

You know, in Mexico, when the police can't keep up, they form their own armed militias. Maybe a pilot program in your neighborhood, Jim?

Anonymous said...

Just get the personnel summary report that Eden has prepared for him for each staff meeting. It will tell you everything you need to know: cadets, p2/c, p1/c, ILD, Military Leave, Medical leave, and Rehires.

Anonymous said...

Getting a copy of Eden's personnel summary report is easier said than done. This is what the media is having to go to court to obtain. We know that APD knows their real number, what we can't understand is why Berry and APD won't tell us the truth. It's as simple as that. Police are paid by taxpayer dollars and therefore we the people should know how many officers we have and where they are assigned. What's so hard about that? Why can't Berry tell us the truth?, Maybe APD is so low in manpower that he believes we can't handle the truth!

Anonymous said...

There might be 430 officers on a BID list and they may all actually bid, but as soon as the BID is over within a week or two positions for inside jobs suddenly open up. Which allows those officers now in new squads to put in for the slots, taking them out of the field. Dwindling the officers in FSB to even lower numbers. It has been going on for years.

Anonymous said...

I would bet that at those meetings held weekly with the Chief and his command staff, that at the end of them the paperwork is not for anyone to take with them. It is probably shredded so no one can leak the actual true numbers to the media. Just a thought...

Anonymous said...

A month or more ago someone on City Council asked Eden how many officers are on patrol. This was when they tried to cancel the cadet class. Eden said he would have to get back to them later. I think he did say there were 940 officers at that time. Not sure. 350 AR15s were purchased around that time. I figure every patrol officer has one.