ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Albuquerque Police are short officers and crime is the biggest issue in the city.
Thursday morning, 41 new Albuquerque officers were sworn in that were desperately needed.
These men and women will bring the total number of sworn in officers at APD to 865.
In total, 43 cadets walked the stage, including seven women and 34 men who will join APD. The remaining two officers will head to Rio Rancho Police.
Chief Mike Geier says these 43 officers are the most qualified of the more than 1,000 who applied to the academy.
He says Thursday was a good step forward in filling that officer shortage.
“It is one of our competing priorities is the best way I can put it, because everything interlinks. We don’t have enough officers. We cant’ do community policing, can’t fight crime to the extent that we would like to and we may not be able to get through the DOJ CESA agreement faster if we had more officers as well,” Chief Geier said.
He says they are working on recruiting more cadets and officers from other agencies. He also says those already patrolling the streets are the department’s best recruiters.
The department offers current officers a $5,000 bonus for recruiting others.
Mayor Tim Keller also spoke at the ceremony saying the city has a long way to go when it comes to fighting crime.
A total of 73 cadets graduated the academy this year.
The new officers will perform about four months of on the job training before hitting streets on their own.