ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Last year, the city of Albuquerque set a record for the number of homicides. Despite a high number of homicide detectives within the Albuquerque Police Department, the department wants more. Mayor Tim Keller wants to add more detectives to the homicide unit in hopes it will help solve more cases. “It’s one of the biggest factors for us to respond to and solve cases faster, each homicide case can take hundreds of hours of one detective’s time,” said APD Deputy Commander, Kyle Hartsock.

Hartsock says the department’s homicide unit currently is staffed with 13 detectives. The mayor’s proposal would increase that number to 16 detectives and two sergeants.

With the current 13, Hartsock says it’s the highest the department has ever had. However, the increase in homicides over the past four years has resulted in 400 cold cases and more than 100 unsolved homicide cases. Also, in just the past year alone there has been a record of 117 murders. “The more detectives we have the more we can spread this workload on them. More detectives, more time between them getting new homicide cases, we just have a higher success rate,” said Hartsock.

Hartsock says prior to last year’s record homicides, the department had already been working on getting more detectives in the department. The funding for new homicide detectives would be included in the mayor’s fiscal budget. APD has also launched a website listing every open and solved homicide case.