APD officer disciplined over on-duty behavior, affair with supervisor

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A 10-year veteran officer of the Albuquerque Police Department is under fire for what he did while working a chief’s overtime job at a Walmart, lying about it, and also having an affair with a supervisor at the city’s Real Time Crime Center.

The case against Richard Whitten began last summer when Whitten’s then-wife sent an email directly to Police Chief Gorden Eden. The wife lamented about the department’s handling of rampant extra-marital affairs, and said her husband was cheating on her with a supervisor at the RTCC.

The email was forwarded to the Civilian-Police Oversight Agency, which launched an investigation.

Through an investigation, the CPOA determined Whitten was in a romantic relationship with Crystal Quintana, a supervisor at the RTCC. On at least 20 occasions, Whitten worked overtime at the RTCC with Quintana as his acting boss.

In an interview, the wife also told the CPOA that Whitten previously had an affair with a loss prevention officer at a Walmart. That affair happened while Whitten was working chief’s overtime at the Walmart, on-duty and in uniform.

According to documents obtained by KRQE News 13, the wife showed the CPOA investigator video proof of the Walmart loss prevention officer affair. The CPOA investigator documented that the video showed Whitten rubbing and kissing the officer in the loss prevention office at the Walmart.

When the CPOA investigator questioned Whitten, he reportedly lied about his conduct at the Walmart.

A citizen, Charles Arasim, recorded the November 2016 CPOA meeting where the findings of the Whitten cases were discussed.

One of the CPOA members voiced concern over the case, saying, “I thought, ‘How many disgruntled wives are we going to be dealing with because their husbands are cheating?'”

But CPOA Executive Director Ed Harness responded by saying the case is bigger than marital problems.

“It involved his conduct with a direct supervisor while he was on overtime and it involved his conduct while on chief’s overtime,” Harness said.

Harness recommended that Chief Eden discipline Whitten for the relationship with his supervisor, the Walmart behavior and lying about his conduct at Walmart.

Eden wrote back to Harness that he agreed with disciplining Whitten for everything except the lying, saying he would need to see the video himself to substantiate it.

The wife, however, wouldn’t turn over the video to investigators. At the time, she said she feared Whitten would lose his job because he was supporting her financially through nursing school.

The two have since divorced.

Whitten was ultimately suspended for a brief period of time, given a letter of reprimand and had to take ethics training.

Quintana was also given a letter reprimand and had to take ethics training. She was hired by APD in 2014.

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