Q&A: Bernalillo County Democratic sheriff candidate John Allen - Albuquerque Journal

Q&A: Bernalillo County Democratic sheriff candidate John Allen

John Allen

NAME: John Allen

POLITICAL PARTY: Democratic

OCCUPATION: Lead instructor at the Central New Mexico Community College Law Enforcement Academy (CNMLEA)

CITY OF RESIDENCE: Albuquerque

RELEVANT EXPERIENCE: My career in law enforcement is extensive and varied: I started as a patrolman with the New Mexico State Police, then moved to the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office where I held supervisory roles with the Homicide, Violent Crimes, Crisis Intervention Team, and Special Weapons and Tactics units. I’ve investigated all types of homicides, officer- and deputy-involved shootings, and problems at the Metropolitan Detention Center; and have worked with the FBI, the DEA, Secret Service and Homeland Security when crimes involved narcotics, gangs and other criminal networks. Today I am a lead instructor at the CNM Law Enforcement Academy.

EDUCATION: Associate degree, CNM

AGE: 47

CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: electjohnallen.com

 

1. What is the biggest crime challenge in Bernalillo County, and how would you address it?

Violent crime is our most serious challenge. We must invest in focused and data-driven policing that keeps violent offenders behind bars. We also must overhaul and improve how BCSO works with APD and our law enforcement partners to communicate better, share resources, and allocate officers and deputies more effectively.

2. What differentiates you from your opponents?

1. Experience — I’ve been a supervisor and police instructor. 2. I represent change — I’m committed to running a strong, professional Sheriff’s Office free from corruption, nepotism and dysfunction. 3. Community support — I’m endorsed by labor, social justice groups, and Democratic leaders like U.S. Sen. Martin Henrich and U.S. Rep. Melanie Stansbury.

3. Do you have a law enforcement officer certification? In Bernalillo County, sheriffs are not required to have a law enforcement officer certification.

Yes, since 1997.

4. What was the most important moment during your law-enforcement career? Or, if you have not previously served in law enforcement, a moment in your career that would speak to the way you would conduct yourself as sheriff?

In 2008, I worked with the FBI and DEA to solve a homicide that involved the Juarez cartel and its narcotic operations here in Bernalillo County. The value of partnerships and collaboration proved effective, and through a multi-agency investigation and across borders, we took four offenders into custody.

5. What changes would you make to the Sheriff’s Office?

We need to restore the public’s trust and rebuild morale at BCSO. The dysfunction at BCSO hurts our entire community and the core mission of public safety. I support transparency with the media, body cameras, continued training for deputies, investments in mental health care, and improving relationships with APD.

6. Should the Sheriff’s Office release information about homicides, shootings by deputies, and critical incidents as they occur? Why or why not?

I will be transparent about crime information and statistics. Releasing information to the public can help solve crimes and bring offenders to justice. If information is sensitive and might impede an investigation, I will be clear about that. Being transparent with the public is important.

7. What do you think should be the relationship between the Albuquerque Police Department and the Sheriff’s Office and how would you foster that relationship?

The relationship with APD should be collaborative, not competitive, as it has been. If we are to reduce crime, we must work better with APD and its leadership. As a lead instructor at the CNM Law Enforcement Academy, I also have relationships with APD officers I’ve trained.

 

Personal background

1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state or federal tax liens?

No.

2. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?

No.

3. Have you ever been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of drunken driving, any misdemeanor or any felony in New Mexico or any other state? If so, explain.

No.

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