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APD Highlights Results of Anti-Crime Operations and VIP Program

Albuquerque is one of only two cities not to experience major crime spike during pandemic.

Dec. 10, 2020

Mayor Tim Keller and Interim Chief of Police Harold Medina highlighted anti-crime operations that are making a difference in violent crime in Albuquerque.

Mayor Keller highlighted a report from the Major City Chiefs Association, which identified Albuquerque as one of just two out of 67 of the largest cities in the United States where violent crime is down. Most cities have experienced spikes in violent crime this year.

“We have work to do, but I would rather be in a position where we are improving, rather than losing ground even during this pandemic,” Mayor Keller said. “In just a few months, APD has made 508 arrests and recovered 76 guns and 62 stolen vehicles during city-wide operations. While many cities experienced crime spikes this year, APD’s hard work has kept Albuquerque safer.”

In addition, the number of shootings with injuries has started to decrease for the first time this year.

These operations are conducted by specialized units within APD, including detectives and officers whose primary mission are not calls for service.

“Moving forward, getting officers who used to be at their desks out into the community to conduct Anti-Crime operations will be the way APD does business,” said Interim Chief Harold Medina. “The focus is to find the right balance between arresting violent individuals and addressing the underlying causes of crime with compassion and avenues to get out of the world of crime.”

On this second point, the Violence Intervention Program is another key driver helping reduce crime and gun violence. Since its launch in April, the VIP team has made 74 custom notifications, where a team of officers and others visits people at high risk of committing violent crime to deliver the message that the community values human life and the lives of group members, but they must choose to stop the violence or face intense police attention.

Of the 74 individuals contacted, not one of them has picked up a gun. Twenty-four of those individuals have reached out for services and there have been 41 services referrals for anything from shelter services to job training and even grief, mental health, and substance abuse counseling.

View MCCA Violent Crime Report (2020 and 2019 Jan1 to Sept30).