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APD Releases Use of Force Report

Oct. 23, 2020

The Albuquerque Police Department released a new Use of Force report that includes updated and detailed information from 2016-2019. The report reflects data about APD’s use of force during major changes to use of force policies and training, as well as a thorough review of hundreds of past cases.

The full report can be found on APD’s web site.

The report confirms that force against individuals is extremely rare, given the high number of interactions officers have with the public. For example, APD averaged 408,000 calls for service per year and 14,556 arrests per year between 2016-2019. During that same period, there were an average of 626 force events per year.

“The current national dialogue about policing and the use of force is long overdue,” Interim APD Chief Harold Medina said. “We know here in Albuquerque how difficult change can be; the challenge is more daunting when your decisions impact public safety. As we continue down the path of transforming the Albuquerque Police Department, we must be transparent about our progress, as well as our shortcomings. Most important, we must be accountable for results in order to earn the trust of the public we serve.”

The report also showed significant improvement during the past four years in the use of On-Body Recording Devices, which allows for more thorough investigations of uses of force.

The report was delayed because APD took considerable time to clean up and verify the 4 years of data, spanning two city administrations, so it is accurate. Chief Medina said it is important to ensure the public is confident in the results of the report.

“We believe it was imperative to produce a report in which we are confident,” Medina said.