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APD Ramps Up Downtown Gun Enforcement Downtown

Offenders to face federal charges for gun crimes near downtown schools

ALBUQUERQUE – The City of Albuquerque announced a new effort to more aggressively target gun crimes in downtown Albuquerque.

Downtown School Zone Buffer

dow“We are using existing federal law to target gun crimes in downtown Albuquerque,” APD Chief Harold Medina said. “Our top priority is to stop people who drive or walk through the heart of downtown and fire guns indiscriminately. We are making a statement that offenders will face lengthy jail sentences if they commit gun crimes downtown.”

Offenders who use guns to commit crimes Downtown could be charged federally if the crimes occur within 1,000 feet of a school. There are six schools in the downtown district between Lomas Blvd. and Coal Ave., and 12th Street and Broadway Ave. The buffer zones around the schools cover most of the downtown district. Under the federal Gun-Free School Zones Act, firearms are prohibited in school zones to include in or on the grounds of a public, parochial or private school, or within 1,000 feet from the grounds.

“I will continue to fight against gun violence our city with every tool we have.  This is a very innovative approach that sends a clear message to anyone who thinks they can come downtown and use a gun to commit a crime, we will catch you and pursue full federal gun charges, and get you off the street,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “We will continue use every tool we have to crack down on gun violence, and we are putting criminals on notice in downtown Albuquerque.”

Property in School Zone Sign

APD is joining forces with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, which will prosecute gun crimes that violate federal law related to gun crimes around schools.

The City is posting signs throughout Downtown to let people know they are in a school zone where federal firearms restrictions apply.

If convicted of violating gun-free school zone laws, you could face up to five years in prison and a maximum fine of $5,000.