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Community Policing Conference Starts Thursday in Albuquerque

Conference will include Police Departments from Olathe, KS, Tucson, AZ, and National City, CA.

August 18, 2021

Starting Thursday, August 19, 2021, City Councilor Klarissa Peña and the Albuquerque Police Department are hosting a Community Policing Conference with police departments from Olathe, KS, Tucson, AZ, and National City, CA.

The mission of this conference is to create a National Community Policing Blueprint in collaboration with municipalities throughout the country who are educating and empowering their youth about motor vehicle safety through the implementation of innovative community policing projects. During this Conference, these communities will present their current work and also receive feedback.  This Conference will also be valuable for bridging the gap between Albuquerque’s lowrider community with other lowrider communities around the country.  All of the discussions and lessons learned during this Conference will be used to help inform the formation of the National Community Policing Forum moving forward.

On Thursday morning, City leadership will welcome the groups from Olathe and Tucson. National City will be joining numerous discussions virtually. Members from the Cruising Task Force will also be presenting their work to conference attendees. The Cruising Task Force was formed in December 2017 and was responsible for making recommendations to promote responsible cruising in the City of Albuquerque.

“Car culture and cruising has such a rich history here in Albuquerque and we’re using that as a bridge in our community policing work,” said Councilor Peña. “I’m excited to meet with other cities and police department to share our histories, ideas, and strategize how to use car culture to promote public safety through community policing.”

The Olathe Police Department is bringing their own lowrider and lowrider bicycles to Albuquerque. The police lowriders will participate in a cruise and other activities throughout the next four days, concluding with APD and Olathe PD displaying both of their lowriders at the Albuquerque Lowrider Super Show on Sunday, August 22nd at the Albuquerque Convention Center. This is the largest lowrider car show in New Mexico and will be displaying the APD and Olathe PD lowrider vehicles and lowrider bicycles.

In promoting the Youth Leadership Lowrider, APD has partnered with Olathe Police Department to battle in the #CopCarChallenge on social media. Both departments have shared posts showing off their lowriders and have invited other departments to share their specialty vehicles.

Since 2019, the Albuquerque Police Department's Southwest Area Command has partnered with a wide variety of local businesses and entities to provide automotive mentorship opportunities to retrofit a police vehicle. APD also held a contest open to local students to create a design to be painted on the vehicle’s hood. Winners of this contest were provided scholarships for school as well as local recognition. APD is using this community-oriented approach to be able to use their vehicles as a tool for building relationships between the lowrider community and law enforcement, while also providing mentorship opportunities for local youth.