ACLU questions State Police presence in ABQ after two shootings

It was a wild night in Albuquerque: two officer-involved shootings in just an hour, on opposite sides of the city. 

“Unfortunately, police in Albuquerque right now is having to deal with dangerous situations,” said Mayor Tim Keller.  

One State Police officer from Farmington, the other from Gallup, both here for the Metro Surge Operation tackling crime. But these shootings have the ACLU raising a lot of questions. 

“The shootings raise a concern that we had from the very beginning, and that is, are these officers going to be held to the same standards that the Albuquerque Police Department officers are held to?” said Peter Simonson with the ACLU. 

Peter Simonson said these shootings involved tactics far different from APD policies and reform. 

“If we set them against the example…another police department that is held to lesser standards, in fact, may not even be trained in the same techniques and de-escalation and otherwise that APD is trained and held accountable to, what will that do to the reform process?” he said. 

Since the officers arrived in Albuquerque last Friday, courts records show at least 17 arrests along the Central Avenue corridor by State Police for everything from DWIs to possession and stolen vehicles. 

“Our guys are out there, they’re busy,” said Mark Soriano with State Police. 

Despite the concerns raised, Mayor Keller and the governor’s office completely support State Police infiltrating a problem area. 

“We’re grateful that they’re here, but we also have faith that they’ll follow appropriate procedures just like we would,” said Keller.  

Another concern the ACLU raised was that as many of these officers are coming from more rural parts of the state, they may not be used to policing a busier area with more chaotic scenarios. 

KRQE News 13 reached out to the governor’s office about the concerns. A spokesperson said every officer that fires their weapon will be investigated and held accountable. 

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