Has local perception of police changed following the arrests of multiple officers?

Has local perception of police changed following arrests of multiple officers?

A lot of the focus this year has been on police officers who are supposed to be enforcing our laws, allegedly breaking them.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – A lot of the focus this year has been on the people who are supposed to be enforcing our laws, allegedly breaking them. 

Some people have very strong opinions about these cases, while others say it’s not so black and white. 

“I’m kind of afraid, and I don’t feel like the right people are getting justice. And here’s all these crooks, DWI people, well not that they’re crooks, but they’re getting off scott free and what else are they doing?” said Cindy Short, an Albuquerque resident.

It’s been nearly 10 years since the Department of Justice stepped in to investigate the Albuquerque Police Department’s use of force. Now, there’s another federal investigation centered on the department’s DWI unit. 

News of the investigation broke a week and a half ago, and New Mexicans have some thoughts. 

“I was very curious as to what exactly happened in that situation, but that doesn’t change my perception of the whole force,” said Charles Gallagher, an Albuquerque resident. 

But not everyone is so trusting. 

“I’m just wondering how far it goes. I’m pretty sure there’s going to be more stuff coming out cause if it’s with the officers how far does it go up?” said Bernadette, another Albuquerque resident. 

2024 didn’t start off great for local law enforcement. Police arrested APD officer Vanessa Santillanes for reportedly shoplifting at Target on Coors and Paseo. She’s facing four misdemeanor charges. 

Meanwhile, BCSO Deputy Adrienne Seay got charged with aggravated DWI earlier this month. 

Police say she went through a sobriety checkpoint smelling like alcohol and admitted to drinking wine before driving. 

Just last week, police arrested BCSO Detective Michael Borreco for allegedly pulling a gun on two men at a Circle K on Osuna.

The officer’s at the center of the federal investigation into APD’s DWI Unit have been put on leave, but have not been charged. 

Santillanes is scheduled to be in court next week on her misdemeanor shoplifting charges. 

Seay will be in court on Feb. 12 for her misdemeanor DWI charge. 

Borrecco is facing a felony charge for that aggravated assault.