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City’s Community Input Process Identifies Key Qualities Sought in Next APD Chief

Residents seek top cop who can deliver results on both crime and reform

Dec. 30, 2020

The City of Albuquerque received nearly 2,300 responses to the online survey seeking public input on APD’s top job, with some common themes emerging from both the survey and more than 40 community input sessions conducted over the last two months.

“We are incorporating the feedback that we are hearing from community stakeholders as we move through the application process,” said Chief of Staff Mike Puelle. “We have currently received about 39 applications for the Chief of Police posting, and are identifying the candidates most in sync with the community’s priorities to advance in the process.”

The survey results, which can be found in the report here showed the following:

  • Communication, leadership by example, and accountability to the community were the attributes most valued by survey respondents.
  • The qualifications considered ‘Very important’ by a large majority of respondents included ‘experience with reducing use of force and procedural justice,’ ‘crisis management,’ and ‘knowledge of crime prevention and law enforcement strategies.’
  • The three priorities considered ‘Very important’ by over 70 percent of survey respondents included ‘Protecting civil rights,’ ‘Reducing violent crime,’ and ‘Improvements in police training.’ 

The community input sessions also garnered input as diverse as Albuquerque itself.  Several common themes that emerged, included:

  • Change the narrative from crime fighting to crime prevention by focusing on behavioral health and public health. Input session participants recommended that the next chief work to address the root causes of crime, in partnership with others to tackle issues such as mental illness, trauma, and substance misuse.
  • Prioritize de-escalation to prevent crimes and officer involved shootings. Input session participants stressed the need for a police chief willing and able to address and resolve the Department’s use of force issues.
  • Seek out candidates whose understanding of, and commitment to, racial equity comes from lived experience. Meeting participants recommended that the next police chief have direct experience addressing racial equity concerns and commit to enhancing racial equity training for officers.
  • Increase APD’s transparency with regard to decisions that affect the community.
  • Engage with the community. Input session participants wanted the next chief to be a visible presence in their communities.

Community advocates, law enforcement professionals, and business leaders will be engaged in the selection process to identify applicants that have the key qualities needed to move forward for consideration.

The list of the applicants for APD’s top job as of December 30, 2020 are included in alphabetical order by last name below. Not all of the applicants met the qualifications set forth in the job description.

Austin, George
Barreto, Tina
Bibb, David
Camacho, Roland
Campa, Jesus
Cassella, Thomas
Childress, Brian
Dobson, James
Fear, Al
Fitzgerald Sr, Dr Joel
Herrera, Paul
Holmes, Philip
Jones, Robert
Lando, Jason
Lestrange, Joseph
Lewin, Jonathan
McCoy Jr, Kenneth
Medina, Harold
Molinari, Mark
Morrison, Earl
Neill, Daniel
Nichols, Clinton
Pate, John
Pearson, Richard
Phipps, Bruce
Pineda, Allan
Pleasant IV, Albert
Radosevich, Emil
Reynolds, Edward
Rhoden, James
Richardson, Todd
Rigoli, Michael
Schembri, Anthony
Smith, George
Sullivan, Joseph
Taylor, William
Vergara, Mariana
Williams, David
Williams, Michele