ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – 2022 brought a record number of homicides to Albuquerque. In fact, the Albuquerque Police Department counted 10 more homicides than in 2021, the previous record-setting year.
At the end of December 2022, the Albuquerque Police Department (APD) published a list of 120 homicides that had occurred throughout the year. That count exceeds the 2021 record of 110 homicides counted by APD.
While 2022 brought more homicides, APD also says they’ve solved more cases in 2022 than in 2021. In December of last year, Kyle Hartsock, the deputy commander overseeing the department’s Criminal Investigations Division spoke about why on KRQE News 13’s podcast.
Hartsock attributed a higher solve rate to good detective work and communication among APD. Hartsock also pointed out that APD has been working on increasing staffing and getting better technology along with focusing on detective training. Hartsock also notes that the department instituted regular check-ins on open murder cases to help come up with new ideas into investigations.
As for why there were more homicides in 2022, Hartsock explained that there’s no single, clear answer. But the deputy commander speculated that there are many factors possibly contributing: A larger number of guns on the street, lingering effects of the pandemic, and the ease of finding victims on social media, among others.
The rise in fentanyl deals may also contribute, according to Hartsock. KRQE News 13 reported that 2022 federal fentanyl busts around Albuquerque have been among the largest ever.