APD chief retiring at tumultuous time for the department

Tessa Mentus
November 05, 2017 10:05 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – APD Chief Gorden Eden announced Saturday that he plans to retire at the end of November, at which point he’ll have held the position for just shy of four years, a span of time in which the department has faced a lot of turmoil.


Just weeks after taking the job in 2014, Eden had to handle a police shooting that garnered national attention, after two officers shot and killed a homeless camper in the Foothills.

At the time Eden said the shooting was justified.

“If you follow case law Garner v. Tennessee, there was a directed threat to an officer,” he said, a response that fueled a growing a protest that quickly evolved into violent riots in downtown Albuquerque.

Ultimately those two officers went on trial for murder but were not convicted.

However, another major obstacle for the chief arrived a month after that shooting. That’s when the U.S. Department of Justice officially announced it was stepping in at APD, after DOJ officials said they had reason to believe APD participated in a pattern of excessive force.

Since then, Eden has had to oversee a sweeping, detailed reform effort at APD. Now, just as it began, he will retire from a department that is trying to tackle one of the worst crime epidemics the City of Albuquerque has ever seen.


Tessa Mentus

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