The Police Oversight Commission met yesterday afternoon just hours after the Department of Justice released its findings on Albuquerque’s police force.
Chair *Jeffrey Peterson opened the regularly scheduled meeting with a statement about why the Police Oversight Commission has avoided commenting publicly on Albuquerque Police Department issues. He said the volunteer committee’s members have to skirt the appearance of bias.
A scathing report has been released by the Department of Justice that accuses Albuquerque Police Department of engaging in patterns and practices of excessive force.
After a spike in officer-involved shootings, federal investigators spent 16 months poring over police reports and interviewing hundreds of people who claim they or their family members were victims of police brutality.
Bernalillo County jail Chief Ramon Rustin’s resignation took effect Monday. After three years as the head of the largest jail in New Mexico, Rustin stepped down saying he needed to meet family obligations.
KUNM spoke with Rustin in February about mental health care at the Metropolitan Detention Center.
Jail staff says MDC is the largest mental health provider in the state. Chief Rustin agreed. In fact, Rustin put that as No. 2 on the list of problems at the Bernalillo County lockup. So what's No. 1? Overcrowding, he said.
APD protestors and supporters turned out yesterday evening to the city council meeting in Downtown Albuquerque. More than 300 people filled the main chamber and overflow room. Those who didn’t make it in watched TV screens in Civic Plaza outside City Hall.
City Council President Ken Sanchez announced at the beginning of the meeting that Mayor Richard Berry would not attend. "Mayor Berry Sends his regrets about not being to attend tonight’s meeting."
Editor's Note: This story has been taken down as it contained text from a Farmington Daily Times article on the same topic without proper attribution. We strive for proper attribution in our reporting and will post the KUNM News Reporting Guide when it is completed which will include details on our newsroom ethics and practices. Questions? Please contact News Director Elaine Baumgartel - firstname.lastname@example.org
The New Mexico Health Exchange reports that a total of 51,400 people have signed up for insurance coverage, either under the Affordable Care Act or directly through health insurance companies as of March 31.
The numbers seem large because unlike past reports, this one includes insurance exchange (or marketplace) shoppers and individuals and groups purchasing plans that are separate from the ACA.
Independent Review Officer Robin Hammer criticizes the city's Police Oversight Commission for failing to examine APD's overall policy on the use of force.
"The current commissioners have chosen not to use some of the powers they’ve already been given," she said in an interview with KUNM. "At no point in my 18 months has the Police Oversight Commission chosen to look at officer-involved shootings and to review what’s gone on."
Contrary to initial reports from the Albuquerque Police Department, no Crisis Intervention Team officers trained to de-escalate situations involving people with behavioral health issues were called to the scene of a Sandia foothills standoff that ended in the death of a camper last month at the hands of police.
KUNM Call In Show Thu. 4/3 8a: As Albuquerque makes national news for a series of police shootings and vigorous citizen protests, we take a look at what has shaped the interactions between citizens and the Albuquerque Police Department (APD). What has been recommended to improve interactions and curb the use of deadly force…what has been done and has not been done, and what can we now do?
Mayor Richard Berry and APD Chief Gordon Eden addressed the media this afternoon regarding yesterday's protest, which the mayor earlier characterized as "mayhem." At today's news conference, Berry reiterated that what happened was not productive and said demonstrators were attempting to escalate the situation.
Gordon described it this way: "What was a peaceful protest turned into this mob state. They were stopping traffic and engaging people who were doing nothing more than trying to get from point A to point B."
UNM's student newspaper, the Daily Lobo, offered a special video report of yesterday's 12-hour protest of the Albuquerque Police Department. The newspaper creates a news broadcast show weekly called "The Howl," which is directed by Michael Warren. Scope the paper's coverage.
Midnight Monday is the deadline to sign up for healthcare under the Affordable Care Act. Over the weekend in New Mexico people lined up to get covered, either through the insurance marketplace or Medicaid.
From those in their 60s to young people under 26 covered under their parents’ plan, hundreds stood in the bright spring sunshine sign up under Medicaid, or with one of four insurance plans.
One of the five Arizona companies that took over operations from New Mexico behavioral health providers last year is announcing salary reductions. The company says it had to cut pay because it was losing money.
Agave is a non-profit corporation formed in New Mexico by Southwest Behavioral Health of Arizona. Rather than imposing layoffs, CEO and President Jeff Jorde said the firm needs to cut salaries for its 350 employees by five percent, beginning next week.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Just hours after hundreds took to the streets to protest the Albuquerque police killing of a homeless man, officials say a man was shot dead by officers after he opened fire on police.
Albuquerque Chief Gorden Eden said the suspect was shot late Tuesday. He said police had received a call to an apartment complex about a man holding a child at gunpoint.
Albuquerque police spokesman Tasia Martinez says the suspect, whose has not been named, died this morning at a nearby hospital.
UPDATE: March 26, 2014—Hundreds marched Downtown last night to protest the Albuquerque Police Department's killing of a foothills camper on March 16. As the demonstration wound down, APD opened fire on a man on the Westside, who police say, fired shots at them first. The suspect died at the hospital.
When police interact with people facing mental health issues, they send an officer trained in crisis intervention to defuse a volatile situation. Those officers are key in preventing the kind of violence that ended in the death of a camper in the Sandia foothills last week.
The National Cancer Institute will come to New Mexico this spring to investigate how much radiation people were exposed to after the Trinity test in the southern part of the state nearly 70 years ago.
The CDC studied health hazards in the New Mexico and said state residents consumed radiation via water, milk, meat and produce grown here after July 16, 1945, when the U.S. Army detonated a nuclear weapon for the first time.
The director of an organization that evaluated the WIPP site for over 25 years said officials aren’t doing enough to inform New Mexicans.
Dr. Bob Neill led the Environmental Evaluation Group, which provided independent technical evaluations of the WIPP project for more than two decades. He retired a year after the plant opened in 1999, and the group disbanded in 2004.
New Mexico’s Human Services Department says more consumers, not fewer, are receiving services since the takeover last summer of a dozen behavioral health providers accused of fraud. HSD’s response is contrary to the results of a progress report by a federal oversight agency.
KUNM Call-In Show Thu. 3/20 8a: The US has been adding fluoride to water supplies for almost 70 years, and no conclusive evidence links its use to poor public health. But in many communities, including Santa Fe and Albuquerque, the topic is highly controversial. This week on the KUNM Call-In Show, we'll talk with advocates on both sides of the issue in advance of an April 9 town hall in Albuquerque.
Excessive drinking is among the leading causes of preventable deaths in the U.S., according to a report just released by the CDC.
Of the 11 states studied, New Mexico had the highest death rate due to alcohol use. For every 100,000 residents, there are about 51 deaths related to excessive drinking, which is almost double the median rate.
The report also tallied up all the years of potential life lost. In New Mexico, that’s a little more than 30 thousand years annually.
The U.S. Senate unanimously approved changes to the way sexual assault cases are handled by the military on Monday night—but stopped short of removing the chain of command from the process. Last week a measure that would have done just that failed by five votes.
KUNM Call In Show Thu. 3/13 8a: New Mexico is perpetually at or near the bottom of state child well-being rankings. New Mexico's children are and have been at risk for abuse, poverty, hunger, and other issues that affect their ability to learn, grow, and be health.
Community health workers can be paid through Medicaid after a measure signed by Gov. Susana Martinez on Sunday, March 9, goes into effect. As things stand, workers’ salaries are primarily funded by grants.
The legislation also creates a state certification program and funding for trainings.