ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Tackling crime and building community trust is the main goal for the Albuquerque Police Department’s interim chief. This comes after Chief Mike Geier was dismissed from the department just a couple weeks ago.
Stepping in for Geier is Deputy Chief Harold Medina who says he plans on applying for the chief position. To start, he says he wants to rebuild the community’s trust in the department.
“Transparency with the police department. Ownership of situations by the Albuquerque Police Department. As Interim Chief, I will take ownership for anything that has occurred that may have been in my span of control or not in my span of control,” Medina says.
Medina was a 19-year veteran at APD before retiring and then coming back as Deputy Chief. On top of community trust, Medina says his main focus is continuing to tackle the growing crime problem in Albuquerque. He says in his first few days of being interim chief, he held meetings with the other deputy chiefs to continue to talk about their ongoing anti-crime campaign. Medina believes combining the investigations, field services, and special operations bureaus together will be able to take more criminals off the streets.
While it’s still too early to tell who will permanently fill the chief’s position, Medina hinted at leaving the department if he doesn’t get the position. “If not, I’m still young and there’s always opportunities throughout the country,” he says.
When it came to Operation Legend, Medina says he didn’t have much to say with that. However, he says the biggest hurdle his officers are facing with right now are repeat criminals who do not get properly prosecuted. Medina says if he has a chance to ask the feds for any help, it would be for more help in federal prosecution.
At the moment, the mayor’s office does not have a specific deadline on when to fill the chief position. Medina was police chief of the Laguna Pueblo before becoming Deputy Chief at APD.
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