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Mon August 18, 2014
Albuquerque City Council Dissolves Police Oversight Commission
UPDATE 11:30p - The Albuquerque City Council voted overwhelmingly Monday night to dissolve the Police Oversight Commission while the police oversight process is overhauled.
The Albuquerque Journal reports eight councilors voted to halt the operations of the commission. The U.S. Department of Justice found the POC was ineffective and contributed to a pattern of unreasonable use of force by APD officers.
KUNM's Rita Daniels reports Albuquerque City Councilors will consider a proposal tonight that would immediately dissolve the Police Oversight Commission.
Several commission members resigned this spring after the U.S. Department of Justice found a pattern of unreasonable use of force by APD officers and that this pattern was exacerbated by an ineffective citizen review process.
Councilor Ken Sanchez says there have been only three serving members when there are supposed to be at least eight.
"So I just don't feel, right now, in its current structure, that the public and the citizens that are filing complaints against the Albuquerque police officers are really being heard,” said Sanchez. “That’s because it doesn't exemplify eight or nine different members from across our city."
Under the proposal, a new oversight board would be created to field complaints against the police department. In the meantime, complaints would be heard by an independent review officer.
A separate bill that establishes exactly how the new commission would operate and how members would be selected will be heard on September 15 instead of Monday, as originally planned.