APD nearing the 1,000 officer ‘milestone’
May 22, 2019 06:09 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — For years, there has been a shortage of officers within the Albuquerque Police Department. It's put a big strain on the department as well as the community but it appears those days could be ending soon.
On Monday the city council approved a $1.1 billion budget with $205 million going to APD.
Some of that money will be used to hire 100 more police officers over the next year and get APD over a significant benchmark.
"We're in a good place right now,” said APD spokesperson Gilbert Gallegos. He said APD currently has 957 officers on the force. He expects the number to hit 1,000 by the end of the year.
"It's a huge milestone,” said Gallegos. “We were at 850 a year ago, which is as low as it's been in a long time."
As KOB 4 has reported, Mayor Tim Keller announced plans last year to hire 100 officers every year for 4 years with the goal of reaching 1,200 officers.
Gallegos said they're on track to hit that goal, thanks in part to officers from other departments around the state joining APD, which are called lateral hires.
"As we expected the lateral are starting to tail off a little bit, we figured we'd get a huge interest when we bumped up salaries and became more competitive," he said.
Gallegos said the focus now is on recruiting officers from out of state and new cadets.
"We're doing a different type of recruiting too,” he said. “We've hired a company to help us with our social media, advertising and we're looking for more diverse candidates."
Gallegos said APD has a big class of about 60 to 70 cadets scheduled this fall that will help push the number well past the 1,000 officer mark.
Updated: May 22, 2019 06:09 PM
Created: May 22, 2019 06:00 PM
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