BCSO review board seeks public’s input on ‘On Patrol: Live,’ recruiting imagery

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – How do you think the rest of the country views Albuquerque? Is giving the nation an inside look at the work deputies are doing a bad move?

That’s the question Bernalillo County is asking and they want to hear from you.

That’s not all, there are a couple of concerns that are getting raised. The first has to do with “On Patrol: Live,” a new TV show that shows the real-life work Bernalillo County deputies do on a daily basis.

“I don’t think this overburdens them to be sensitive to appearance,” said Tommy Jewell, chair of the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office Advisory and Review Board. 

The Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office Advisory and Review Board is a civilian oversight group created in 2020 to provide feedback.

“The public needs some vehicle, other than an election every four years, to evaluate operations of the sheriff’s office,” said Jewell. 

The advisory board wants to know if “On Patrol: Live” poses a liability – is it ethical, and is this how we want to show off Bernalillo County?

Concerns have also been raised about possible white supremacist imagery on certain BCSO vehicles.

“There are certainly some questions about – the appropriateness of these symbols,” Jewell said. 

A BCSO recruiting vehicle is covered with different symbols. Some have asked if having “fit to fight,” is good form for law enforcement.  The advisory board also says some are likening the Viking helmet as a cryptic nod to a white supremacist group.

 “I don’t think there’s any question that can be some attachment, some negative connotation about those symbols,” said Jewell. 

But the real question is, what do you think? And will you make your voices heard?

“I, for one, have not been satisfied with the level of public participation and I would like to know why – this is extremely important,” Jewell said. 

As for the imagery on that BSCO recruiting vehicle, BCSO representatives say they are created by each cadet class and represent camaraderie among each class, and they would never promote divisive symbolism.

As for “On Patrol: Live,” BCSO officials say they welcome public comment and have not received any formal negative complaints.

Full statement from Stan E. Hubbard, CEO of REELZ:

“On Patrol: Live provides a transparent and unfiltered look at the job law enforcement officers across the country do in their communities, including here in Bernalillo County, on a daily and nightly basis. On Patrol: Live encourages conversations around policing and allows viewers to form their own opinions based on what they see live every Friday and Saturday night. REELZ is extremely proud to bring this series to viewers across the country.”

Full statement from spokesperson for Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office, Felicia Maggard:

We always welcome public comment regarding any matters related to the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office. The images featured on one of our current recruiting vehicles were selected from past cadet class images. These images are created by each cadet class and represent comradery among the cadets as they work towards a collective goal to protect and serve the community. Cadets are inspired and encouraged to build bonds as they advance through the rigorous training of the academy and prepare for a career in law enforcement. It is a built-in tradition to have each cadet class create a “guidon” which displays their class symbol. The cadets represent our community and come from various and diverse backgrounds. We would never promote any symbolism that may cause division in the community we serve. 

In reference to our presence with On Patrol, we have yet to receive any formal negative complaints from our community. Instead, it has served as a humanistic portrayal of the job and humanizes each citizen who wears the badge in service of our community. We seek to highlight the professional and dedicated work our deputies do every day. We continue to receive overwhelming support on social media platforms about our presence on the show. 

We have always welcomed public comment and have responded in a timely fashion when concerns are brought to our attention. We appreciate all inquiries as we continue to protect and serve Bernalillo County. Thank you for bringing this to our attention and be safe.

Click here to sign up for the Sheriff’s Office Advisory and Review Board.

For more information on SOARB, click here.