APD Forward Says Lack of Reform Progress by Police Due to Failure by APD Top Brass
Calls use-of-force tracking 'almost completely dysfunctional'BY ABQ FREE PRESS STAFF APD Forward, a coalition of civil rights advocates formed to reviews the Albuquerque Police Department's effort to reform itself, says the latest report by APD's U.S. Department of Justice monitor shows APD remains in denial. "The single biggest issue is that APD’s system for tracking and responding to use of force incidents seems to be almost completely dysfunctional," the group said in a report released Thursday. "An underlying problem is that APD continues to fail to take responsibility for the reform effort and own the problems that led to the need to change its organizational culture in the first place," the group said in its analysis of DOJ monitor James Ginger's third report. "This issue is most evident at the command level where APD leadership has failed to lead by example. Throughout the report, Dr. Ginger notes points of contention between APD and the Monitor regarding whether or not APD is in compliance with certain requirements of the agreement. "APD still lacks the self-awareness needed to be truly successful in the reform process. That said, although APD is largely failing to make adequate progress in complying with the most significant terms of the settlement agreement, the Monitor did praise the Civilian Police Oversight Agency and also noted improvements in the functioning of APD’s specialized units, including SWAT." The report continued: "In the Monitor’s second report, he noted specific examples of use of force investigations that were also troubling. It seems, however, that APD has either not read the Monitor’s previous report or ignored his feedback and suggestion." The group said it is apparent APD will not meet its deadline of reforming its pattern of unconstitutional policing and remedying its use of excessive force within a self-imposed four-year time frame. The DOJ sued APD over its "culture of aggressive" that lead scores of people to be shot by police since 2010. In a settlement announced last year, APD was assigned an independent monitor to report to a federal judge periodically on the department's progress.
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