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Meet requirements and DOJ goes away

Members of an Albuquerque Police Department SWAT team respond to a shooting near Bianchetti Park in October of 2019. (Adolphe Pierre-Louis/Albuquerque Journal)

RE: (April 27 article:) “APD union launches campaign against ‘endless DOJ oversight'”

… Let’s talk about “crime matters more.”

The DOJ oversight would not be endless if the DOJ recommendations were fulfilled. That would end the expenditure of monitoring APD, and the cost would not be endless.

Spending $70K on a campaign to question “how hard it is just to succeed” is how former APD officer, now police union president, Sean Willoughby is looking for support. His argument, that officers are removed from duty by a “bureaucracy” “because somebody that was not used force on said, ‘ow’ ” is a despicable slight against Albuquerque residents who have registered legitimate use-of-force complaints against APD officers.

… It seems APD is progressing. But (Willoughby) must understand the DOJ is in your face because (his) organization had major problems. It’s improved on creating policies and is doing well on training, but APD is failing to ensure (his) organization is acting according to procedures, and APD is not correcting when procedures are not followed.

(Willoughby has) a personnel problem, and (isn’t) addressing it. (He has) 20 to 25% of (the) APD force that are problems, or bad apples. (He has) one solution: Get rid of the worst and make an example of any who can be reformed.

If, (as happened with the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office,) an officer thinks it’s better to execute a mentally disturbed, 5-foot woman coming out of her trailer half naked, that officer needs to be removed from (the) force. If any officer needs to fire a full clip, in seconds, I submit that officer needs to be given a very comprehensive evaluation.

(Willoughby seems) to protect, harbor and desire to keep members of the APD who are credibly accused of behavior that is described as “bordering on sadistic.” (He needs) to be accountable.

I’m sure a majority of APD does not approve of conduct that required DOJ oversight. I’m sure the majority of the APD would like a system where that 20-25% who are the problem could be addressed.

Willoughby (seems) not to be the solution. Only the members of the APD can force that change. I hope (he and) APD will stop the rhetoric and address (their) problems.

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