More APD officers have left the department this year than in 2020

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Staffing and recruitment is a struggle for the Albuquerque Police Department, but this year even more officers are heading out the door.

A report presented Monday to the city council showed 900 cadets were sworn in as officers in September.

“I think overall, I think our main concern is we need more officers,” said Lan Sena, city councilor. “In years past history, this is pretty common to see anywhere between 75, 85 separations in a year."

In all of 2020, 83 officers left the department – that includes terminations, resignations and retirements.

In 2021 – with three months to go – APD has lost 118 officers, with more than 40 resignations.

“We do have more separations than we have coming in, we continue pushing with our cadet classes. We’re trying to get to the 70 some odd numbers when we have a cadet class and hopefully trying to provide as much as we can for those laterals,’ said Roger Legendre, acting commander of Special Service Division.

Legendre said they are trying to recruit and retain both new officers and lateral moves.

“It’s an ongoing effort it’s a non-stop effort and you know, for police work in general it’s not anything that is not unique to APD, it’s something we’re seeing statewide,” said Legendre.

The field services bureau makes up 53% of all staffing, with the most officers in the northeast and southeast area commands, based on call volume.

“There’s overlap on our busy days, our Friday Saturday, Sundays. There’s always overlap, so you’re looking at anywhere from 10 to 13 officers in any given area at that time,” Legendre said.