SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – The Santa Fe Police Department’s most recent operation, which brought more police to top tourist destinations, has come to a close.
“I don’t like it. I am very unhappy. I want to see more cops,” said Christina Iverson, with
Western apparel store Kowboyz in the Santa Fe Railyard.
The Railyard and the Plaza were the target areas of the Santa Fe Junction Operation which heightened police presence in the areas. The 30-day operation started on April 19 and ended in May. Police launched the operation after business owners saw an increase in break-ins and illegal camping. Some businesses and residents nearby welcomed more officers to the area saying it did help lower crime.
“I think in Santa Fe in general we have [seen more police]. I think it’s needed,” said Malvina Cannon, a frequent visitor to the Railyard.
Others in the area mentioned it wasn’t enough.
“I hope they bring more. I do. I would like to see a police officer here in the Railyard walking down the street or driving down the street every hour,” said Iverson.
While the Santa Fe Police Department said it’s hard to gage when an operation is successful, they believe their presence deterred crime. Police logged 121 patrol hours and made 11 arrests.
“In this case because we tend to see an increase level of overall criminal activity, this is on average or on par for the number of arrests that we would typically see for anyone of these 30 day operations,” said Lieutenant Jose Gonzales, with the Support Operations Section of the Santa Fe Police Department.
Police added the operations also help them get to know business owners and residents to help fix issues in their neighborhoods. While they would like to keep more officers in this area, they said staffing shortages cause an issue.
“In the meantime, these operations are extremely helpful when we need to address specific problems in a specific area,” said Gonzales.
There were 6 warrant arrests, along with arrests for misdemeanors and drugs. Police said during the operation they helped with 45 disorderly conduct calls.