ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Protecting property from crimes remains a high priority in Old Town Albuquerque. A neighborhood association in the area is taking new security measures into their own hands.

JJ Mancini is the president of the Historic Old Town Association and said talks of bringing in private security started when it appeared that the Albuquerque Police Department needed help prioritizing their needs. “So in short we decided to hire private security to kind of fill that gap to where we can get an on-call response within 5-15 mins and resolve some of those issues,” said Mancini.

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Over the summer the association started sending out emails and flyers to inform residents and business owners in the neighborhood about their idea. “I think we’re 70-80 people that are involved organizations it could be a company, it could be a property owner, someone who is renting space, it can be anyone,” said Mancini.

Those who decided to hire the private security company pay a monthly fee of $25. The company is responsible for patrolling the neighborhood once a day and are on-call around the clock.

Despite the added security some are not on board with the decision. The owner of Change-Out Jewelry, Anita Foster, said she understands why the association came to the decision of having private security but feels there’s only so much protection they can provide.

Mancini said they’ll continue having the private company monitor the area as long as people continue to pay their monthly fee.

KRQE reached out to APD and they sent us a statement:

“APD has been in contact with Old Town about their issues with unhoused individuals and theft in the area, which were shared with our officers who were asked to patrol the area more frequently. Our officers work hard to proactively patrol the entire community and frequently add extra patrols when we hear from our community about ongoing issues, while responding to calls for service.  

Private security companies can be helpful by resolving issues before police are needed, or by providing police with a point of contact when property owners are not available.“