Director of APD oversight group resigns

Politics - Government

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The head of a group created to hold Albuquerque police accountable stepped down calling out the organization’s board for not automatically reappointing him.

“You decided to deny my request and open my position to applicants. You reached this conclusion without speaking with or consulting with any of the stakeholders in the community, but most shameful is the fact that you didn’t even have enough respect to speak with any member of the CPOA staff,” said Executive Director Ed Harness.

Harness announced at Thursday night’s board meeting that he is withdrawing his bid to keep serving as executive director of the Civilian Police Oversight Agency or CPOA. That’s the group that investigates cases of complaints and use of force cases. Harness says under his six-year tenure, the agency has really turned around, even as he has dealt with 29 different bosses in that time.

Earlier this year, the CPOA was finally securing more funding to shore up its staffing and getting APD to be more transparent during investigations. Most of the board remained silent after Harness’s announcement, except Board Chair Eric Olivas, who thanked Harness for his service.

“This does come as a shock to all of us I imagine, but wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors, and thank you for giving us this information tonight,” said Olivas.

Harness says November 15 will be his last day.

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