Keller: ABQ done poaching officers in NM - Albuquerque Journal

Keller: ABQ done poaching officers in NM

Mayor Tim Keller (Adolphe Pierre-Louis/Journal file)

Copyright © 2019 Albuquerque Journal

Albuquerque’s quest to boost its police ranks has in the past year pulled in officers from departments in Rio Rancho, Santa Fe and even Hobbs.

But Mayor Tim Keller now says the city will relax its efforts to hire away from other New Mexico agencies.

Keller, speaking Monday to local real estate development professionals, asked for their recruiting help as the city continues trying to add 100 new officers annually – now without luring them away from other, lower-paying in-state police departments.

“We are done trying to poach folks,” Keller said Monday at a luncheon for the New Mexico chapter of NAIOP. “It was something we needed to do – and I will say I did work with all the other mayors on that and, I think actually, net-net, it worked out OK and we got our additional 100 – but we’re going to have to go to other cities now.”

Albuquerque reached its annual hiring goal last year and already-certified officers from other departments accounted for most of the influx. Of the 59 officers who participated in two of APD’s “lateral” academies last year, 11 came from the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office, 11 were from the Santa Fe Police Department and eight were from Rio Rancho, according to data APD provided to the Journal at the time. The classes also drew members from Socorro, Farmington and Hobbs.

Albuquerque has in recent years experienced some of the country’s highest crime rates. While Keller called the in-state poaching a matter of necessity on Monday, he said it is time to shift the strategy and begin looking elsewhere for officers – both within the local high schools and colleges, but also outside the state.

A spokeswoman said after the speech that lateral recruiting was always part of the initial plan, but the city recognized it would eventually have to start looking beyond state lines.

“With this year’s budget, we invested in recruiting and are better positioned now to do that,” spokeswoman Jessie Damazyn said in a written response to Journal questions.

Keller did not identify any specific communities APD would target, but asked the hundreds of attendees at the sold-out luncheon to help promote the city to potential recruits brought in for visits.

“We’ll be setting up delegations and when recruits come here, (we need help) to literally try to sell them on trying to come to our community and help us be safe,” he said.

Keller on Monday also asked for help with several other initiatives, including donations to help pay for housing vouchers, and to help the city provide more summer and after-school opportunities for kids.

He also urged attendees to support $128 million in general obligation bonds going before voters this November, specifically citing the $14 million that would go toward building a 24/7 centralized facility both to shelter homeless people and to direct them to relevant services and programs.

Home » News » Albuquerque News » Keller: ABQ done poaching officers in NM

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

taboola desktop

Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema switches to independent
ABQnews Seeker
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Democratic Sen. Kyrsten ... WASHINGTON (AP) -- Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona announced Friday she has registered as an independent, a renegade move that could bolster her ...
Katy Duhigg in line to lead Rules Committee
ABQnews Seeker
She will fill a vacancy created ... She will fill a vacancy created with Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto gave up the post
Albuquerque Little Theatre brings 'A Tuna Christmas' to stage
ABQnews Seeker
Albuquerque Little Theatre gets in the ... Albuquerque Little Theatre gets in the holiday spirit with "A Tuna Christmas."The prod ...
Lawmakers discuss new oversight for NM prisons
ABQnews Seeker
Hefty legal settlements over past year ... Hefty legal settlements over past year draw attention, calls for action
'Our new Santa': Good Samaritan gifts bike after clothing ...
ABQnews Seeker
Crime occurred Tuesday night at Northeast ... Crime occurred Tuesday night at Northeast Albuquerque nonprofit
Fifth-year senior 'Uncle Mo' Udeze mentors his Lobo freshmen ...
ABQnews Seeker
'He’s definitely the big dog in ... 'He’s definitely the big dog in the house,' says one roomie Donovan Dent
Inmates train pups that don't get adopted
ABQnews Seeker
The program is a win-win solution ... The program is a win-win solution for both humans and canines
Public weighs in on Mayor Tim Keller’s sweeping zoning ...
ABQnews Seeker
The legislation seeks to grow the ... The legislation seeks to grow the city’s housing stock with development ordinance amendments enabling greater density
$117 million grant expected to expand high-speed internet across ...
ABQnews Seeker
'We don't want to miss any ... 'We don't want to miss any opportunity,' Gov. Lujan Grisham said.