US Justice Department in early probe of Albuquerque police

Sep 16, 2012

The U.S. Department of Justice has confirmed it is conducting a preliminary inquiry of the Albuquerque Police Department to see if a full-blown "pattern and practices" investigation is merited.

Friday's brief statement from the Justice Department comes after months of criticism from advocates because of 25 officer-involved shootings since 2010. Seventeen were fatal.

KRQE-TV reports the agency is conducting an inquiry. The Justice Department statement was provided to the Albuquerque Journal Friday after the report aired.

Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz has initiated dozens of policy changes, including requiring officers to wear lapel cameras and requiring better training for lower level supervisors.

The Justice Department says it will notify the city if it opens a formal investigation.