ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A handful of metro Walgreens stores that sell liquor are causing some major problems, and one city councilor thinks she knows why. Now the city is trying to fix some of those issues.

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District 3 Councilor Klarissa Peña says she believes liquor sales plus security issues have made some pretty big problems for a few Walgreens locations around the city, one of those stores is at Coors and Central. “My husband and I were actually there a few weeks ago,” said Peña. “A couple of gentlemen just filled their arms with alcohol and ran out,” Pena said.

It seems to be a common occurrence. Last year, News 13 showed lapel footage of an arrest. Albuquerque Police caught up to Esai Smith after they say he broke into the Walgreens on Coors and Sequoia and tried stealing a bucket of shooters.

Now seven Walgreens locations are enrolled in the City’s ADAPT Program, including three on Coors and two on Central. The ADAPT Program focuses on problem properties that fall under two of the following categories.

  • Code Enforcement Violations
  • Fire Enforcement Violations
  • or are considered a Hot Spot for criminal activity

Councilor Peña says she believes liquor sales are the root of the problem at these particular Walgreens locations, specifically the sale of minis. Legislation signed by the governor today could help. House Bill 2-55 bans the sale of mini liquor bottles at places like convenience stores. “This is without question the most impactful liquor reform bill in 40 years in the state of New Mexico,” said Representative Moe Maestas.

AFR says the main goal of the ADAPT program is to get properties into compliance. That can mean getting them help with various security measures, and helping them make improvements that will fix any code violations they may have.

Last January, two Albuquerque 7-11 locations with crime and other problems agreed to stop selling minis and pints to help clean up the neighborhoods.