Albuquerque releases résumés of police chief candidates - Albuquerque Journal

Albuquerque releases résumés of police chief candidates

The city of Albuquerque released the names and résumés of the 28 applicants for the position of police chief Thursday, more than two weeks after a public records request and one day after announcing the name of the new chief.

City officials said keeping the names secret until after the chief was named was not intentional.

“The request simply went through the (Inspection of Public Records Act) process with the city clerk’s office,” said Felicia Salazar, a spokeswoman for the mayor’s office.

The city started accepting applications for the position on May 1, and on May 30 the Journal made an Inspection of Public Records Act request for the résumés and applications for the people vying to be the next police chief.

The city’s response was the request was “excessively broad and burdensome” and that it would need until June 14 to release the information.

It was unclear why the request was “burdensome,” considering that a search committee had all of the résumés, interviewed four of the candidates in person and then announced Wednesday that interim Chief Michael Geier had been selected for the position — a point made by the New Mexico Foundation for Open Government.

The state open records law says that public records shall be made public immediately if available, and within 15 days at most.

In this case, the records should have been released much sooner, said attorney Greg Williams, a member of FOG’s executive committee.

“The purpose of our public records law is to get records into the hands of the public as soon as possible,” he said. “It would have been simple for the city to provide them within a day of being requested because they were already compiled for purposes of evaluating the applications. The citizens would have been better served if they had the list of applicants before the decision was made so they could weigh in on the applications.”

‘Hundreds of old requests’

Salazar said a backlog of requests caused the delay.

“The new administration would like to start responding to IPRAs faster, but with hundreds of old requests pending it’s going to take some time to set up that process,” she said.

In a news release announcing that Geier had been chosen, the city identified three other candidates who were interviewed in Albuquerque.

They were: Keith Humphrey, the chief of police in Norman, Okla.; Jeronimo Rodriguez, chief of investigations in the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office and a former high-ranking officer for Baltimore police; and Perry Tarrant, assistant chief of police in Seattle.

City officials said those candidates will be considered for other leadership positions within APD.

A review of the other 24 people who applied for the job showed that none of them now works for APD.

Other local candidates included Richard Gomez, a former APD captain who retired in 2007; Phillip Hart, the chief of Gallup police; Dennis Maez, who quit APD as a sergeant before a career with the U.S. Secret Service; and Joseph Silva, a commander for University of New Mexico police.

Many chiefs and high-ranking officials at small police departments and sheriff’s offices around the country were interested in the position, as was a high-ranking officer for Chicago police.

The lone international candidate was the law enforcement coordinator for the police department in the biggest city on the island of Cyprus.

The full list can be found at ABQJournal.com.

Prior reticence

This is not the first time the city has failed to release all applicants’ names before the announcement of a high-profile appointment.

Esteban Aguilar Jr., who was named city attorney in March, did not appear on the list of 19 applicants the city provided to the Journal prior to his appointment.

The city released those names in response to the Journal’s IPRA request filed on Jan. 29. Aguilar submitted his application Feb. 16, well after the published closing date for applications.

The names of the 19 applicants were included in a story published in the Journal on March 2. Although the Journal had been in contact with the city for that story, it did not mention Aguilar’s name.

Aguilar’s hiring was announced the next day.

Aguilar’s name was not on the list supplied to the Journal by the city’s Human Resources Department because “we hadn’t received a résumé from Mr. Aguilar as of the date the (IPRA) request was received,” the city told the Journal in an emailed statement.

Home » News » Albuquerque News » Albuquerque releases résumés of police chief candidates


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
Rio Rancho police seek suspect in officer-involved shooting
ABQnews Seeker
  Rio Rancho police say they ...   Rio Rancho police say they are looking for an 'armed and dangerous' individual in a stolen vehicle who was part of an officer-involved ...
2
A trying time for trout
ABQnews Seeker
Wildfires prompt fish rescues in NM ... Wildfires prompt fish rescues in NM habitats
3
Legislation expected to revive US technology
ABQnews Seeker
New CHIPS Act can help seed ... New CHIPS Act can help seed industry expansion in NM and elsewhere
4
New Mexico seeks proposals to use $10 million mine ...
ABQnews Seeker
Projects should benefit farming, outdoor recreation ... Projects should benefit farming, outdoor recreation or natural resources in NW New Mexico
5
First baby gorilla born at ABQ BioPark Zoo in ...
ABQnews Seeker
Gender reveal will come when Mom ... Gender reveal will come when Mom Samantha lets keepers get a closer look at her baby
6
Congress OKs Dems' climate, health bill, a Biden triumph
ABQnews Seeker
A divided Congress gave final approval ... A divided Congress gave final approval Friday to Democrats' flagship climate and health care bill, handing President Joe Biden a back-from-the-dead triumph on coveted ...
7
APD releases IDs, gives updates on six homicides in ...
ABQnews Seeker
Victims were three men and three ... Victims were three men and three women
8
Accused drunken driver who hit Gallup parade-goers held until ...
ABQnews Seeker
Motorist faces charges of aggravated DWI, ... Motorist faces charges of aggravated DWI, leaving the scene of an accident
9
Mosquitoes with West Nile virus detected in Albuquerque area
ABQnews Seeker
Environmental and health officials in the ... Environmental and health officials in the Albuquerque area say they have found mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus. The City of Albuquerque Environmental Health Department ...