NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Three candidates have made it on the ballot as they look to replace the current Democratic Attorney General Hector Balderas, who is wrapping up his second and final term. Democratic candidates Raúl Torrez and Brian Colón went head-to-head Monday in KRQE’s debate. Below are some highlights of the debate.

Q: Crime has been increasing at an alarming rate in New Mexico. The FBI director called our record number of murders “truly horrifying.” As Attorney General, what is the first thing you’ll do to tackle our violent crime problem?

Question for Brian Colón: Should we change pretrial detention to battle crime?

Question for Raúl Torrez: Lawmakers decided changes you fought for weren’t needed for pretrial detention. What’s wrong with their analysis?

Brian Colon and Raul Torrez talk about Jackson Weller case during the debate.

Note: Darian Bashir killed Jackson Weller outside a Nob Hill bar in 2019. Two years before the murder, Bashir was arrested for shooting a man outside a downtown bar. But Bashir never went to trial in that case. Judge Cindy Leos said in a motion, it was due to the state failing to comply with deadlines, not interviewing witnesses on time, and not responding to motions.

Last week, the father of murdered University of New Mexico baseball player Jackson Weller is asking Attorney General candidate Brian Colón to stop airing the attack ad that includes his son’s case. State auditor Brian Colón and Bernalillo County District Attorney Raúl Torrez are running for attorney general and will face off in a Democratic primary. Colón’s attack ad goes after Torrez’s record. 

Drug crisis in New Mexico:

Q: What is the most important and specific crime law that the legislature needs to pass?

Q: With the recent legalization of cannabis in New Mexico, how will you help enforce laws, specifically drugged driving?