Settlement Agreement: City of Albuquerque & Justice Department
Albuquerque - In six months, after hundreds of hours of negotiating, today the City of Albuquerque and the Department of Justice announced they have come to an agreement. Joining with Albuquerque Chief of Police Gorden Eden Jr. and Assistant Chief Robert Huntsman, Mayor Berry discussed the 104 page Agreement and what it means for the Albuquerque Police Department and community. The Mayor has participated in negotiations, and has been briefed throughout the process; he emphasized the important role of the community:
"I believe that our team from the City has worked in earnest with the Department of Justice to craft a reform package that will enhance the safety of both our community and our police officers, promote constitutional and effective policing in our great City, and deliver high-level, high-quality police services by augmenting the already great work done by the vast majority of Albuquerque Police Officers. We ask for the help of our community and our officers and their families to accomplish our shared goals, because the fact is we need the community's help to foster positive changes."
In a summary from Attorney Scott Greenwood, Special Counsel for the City of Albuquerque, Greenwood gave an abstract of the Agreement:
"The Settlement Agreement is the result of hundreds of hours of arms' length negotiations between the City and DOJ teams. It is specific to this City and this police department, and has been strengthened immeasurably by the immersion in the process of Chief Eden and Assistant Chief Huntsman. Every term of the Agreement has been crafted with the goal for the City and APD to have the ability to achieve it, train it, and measure it."
Key elements of the Agreement include:
- Use of Force- policy reforms, reporting, reviewing and investigating
- Additional Training- for use of force situations, crisis intervention, and Field Officers see chart 1.1
- Staffing and Accountability- including additional accountability measures and a monitor
- Recruiting, Selection, and Promotions- adding layers of evaluations into the promotion process
- Community Engagement and Oversight
- Implementation/Compliance Timeline
While this Settlement Agreement is considered by all parties as ambitious there is consensus that it is not just achievable, but that the progress will be measureable.
"This forward-looking agreement, gives the reform process great momentum in achieving the goals of constitutional policing and promotes officer safety. I am proud to be the Chief and to have a great team of officers and employees who are committed to serving our community with integrity, as we move our city forward," said Chief Eden.
The Agreement serves as the foundation to protect the community and officers, while promoting fully constitutional and effective policing, and delivering high-quality police services. The reforms in the Settlement Agreement are consistent with national best practices and could be utilized as a new national benchmark.
"With the release of our APD Settlement Agreement with the Department of Justice, I believe we are setting a new national standard for policing and police reforms," said Mayor Berry.
The full Settlement Agreement, Greenwood's Summary, and a chart outlining the Training Hours for Officers are available online at http://www.cabq.gov/mayor.