APD and local leaders meet with US Marshals Service Director – City of Albuquerque

To marry. January 12, 2023

ALBUQUERQUE – APD Chief Harold Medina and Mayor Tim Keller today in a meeting with US Marshals Service Director Ronald L. Davis emphasized the need for a strong partnership to address Bernalillo County’s warrant backlog.

Albuquerque is one of 10 cities Director Davis visits to meet with local law enforcement and discuss crime challenges. Guests at today’s meeting included US State Police Chief Tim Johnson and BCSO Sheriff John Allen marshal for the District of New Mexico, Sonya K. Chavez, and US Attorney for the District of New Mexico, Alex Uballez, among many others.

The group discussed the urgent need to address the nearly 5,000 outstanding felony warrants in Bernalillo County

“The US Marshals Service is a powerful partner in crime-fighting,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “With your help, we can close this warrant backlog and make meaningful and immediate progress in reducing crime.”

“There has always been this backlog of arrest warrants” said Chief Harold Medina. “We have to boldly think outside the box to erase these warrants. These crime mongers need to be in prison and not roaming the streets thinking no one is looking for them.”

“The benefit of this visit was to understand what is happening in New Mexico and how the US Marshals Service can help fight violent crime in the state,” said the Honorable Ronald L. Davis, director of the US Marshals Service. “The more strategic we are, the more evidence-based we are, the more community-focused and community-focused we are, the better the response will be when it comes to arresting violent refugees and holding them accountable.”

During the meeting, attendees discussed a variety of issues affecting the criminal justice system, including exploring warrant-based voluntary surrender days, judges considered the possible addition of alternative courts and programs, mental and behavioral health assistance, evaluating crime drivers and importance by officials and community security when serving warrants.

The group also discussed the city’s request to lawmakers for a $20 million option fund to clear the backlog, an increase from the $10 million originally announced. In today’s discussions, all sectors of the criminal justice system have expressed the need for funding to support the reduction of the backlog. This fund would be used to support the overtime staff needed to clear the backlog without affecting the number of officers in the field.

Mayor Keller also highlighted the Metro Crime Initiative during the meeting with Principal Davis. The creation of the MCI in 2021 addressed important issues, but there is still a long way to go to repair the criminal justice system. The group discussed gaps in the system and what can be done locally and through legislative support.

The Metro Crime Initiative also includes several policy and budget motions, including support for officer recruitment and retention, increased funding for drug investigations, tougher penalties for gun crimes, and expanding resources to address domestic violence.

In November, the city introduced theirs Political Priorities 2023 for MCI in the upcoming session. You can read the priority list, here.

B-roll of the discussion can be found here here.

Below is a list of participants in today’s discussion:

  • Mayor Tim Keller, City of Albuquerque
  • Isaac Benton, Albuquerque City Council Chairman
  • Sam Bregman, District Attorney, Second Circuit
  • Adriana Barboa, District Commissioner of Bernalillo
  • Julie Morgas Baca, Bernalillo District Manager
  • The Honorable Maria Dominguez, Chief Justice, Metropolitan Court
  • The Honorable Mari Ward, Chief Justice, NM District Court
  • Marian Matthews, NM State Representative
  • Representative for Senator Ben Ray Lujan’s Office
  • Representative of the Office of Senator Martin Heinrich

Law Enforcement Partners

  • S. Attorney Alex Uballez
  • Chief Harold Medina, Albuquerque Police Department
  • Sheriff John Allen, Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office
  • Chief Tim Johnson, New Mexico State Police
  • Secretary Jason Bowie, New Mexico Department of Public Safety
  • SAC Greg Millard, DEA
  • SAC Raul Bujanda, FBI
  • SAC Brendan Iber, ATF
  • DSAC JT Stevens, HSI
  • Director Will Glaspy, NM HIDTA