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APD Interim Chief Medina Strengthens Homicide Unit

The additional support for the Homicide Unit, which also includes civilian staff and assistance from Cold Case detectives, will help APD address the homicide caseload.

Dec. 18, 2020

APD Interim Chief Harold Medina announced today the addition of two detectives, a second sergeant and more experienced Command staff to oversee homicide investigations. Medina said he also wants to create a Detectives Academy.

The additional support for the Homicide Unit, which also includes civilian staff and assistance from Cold Case detectives, will help APD address the homicide caseload.

Mayor Keller’s plan to hire hundreds of new officers allowed APD to make this investment in homicide investigations, along with more patrol officers and proactive operations to drive down crime.

“We are making arrests every day, while working to prevent crime at every level,” Chief Medina said. “While we doubled the number of homicide detectives two years ago, we realized we needed more resources, better training and experienced detectives to do justice for victims and their families.”

The Homicide now has 12 detective positions and 2 sergeants to provide oversight and help manage cases. Chief Medina also appointed Acting Commander Dennis Tafoya and Acting Lt. Hollie Anderson to oversee the Criminal Investigations Division. Tafoya and Anderson have investigative experience, including work with the Homicide Unit.

Last week, Chief Medina highlighted APD’s work to attack violent crime, which includes a dedicated Gun Violence Reduction Unit; the Metro 15 operation that targets drivers of crime; and the Violence Intervention Program. Chief Medina participated with the VIP team this week to reach out to young people involved in crime, and offer resources and guidance to help them make better decisions.

Since being named interim Chief, Medina also started weekly citywide Anti-Crime Operations, which have resulted in more than 550 arrests since August.

A recent report released by the Major Cities Chief’s Association showed Albuquerque was one of only two cities that did not experience a spike in violent crime during Covid.