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CABQ and APD officials share update on downtown TEAM efforts

 Albuquerque city officials say a thriving and active downtown is key to secure the future of the city.
Gino Gutierrez
Albuquerque city officials say a thriving and active downtown is key to secure the future of the city.

It’s been eight months since Albuquerque city and law enforcement officials announced the activation of their new TEAM or Targeted Enforcement and Active Monitoring unit in the downtown section of the city.

In that time frame, the department has seen many crime categories trending downward.

Initially, this program was created to help build a stronger downtown presence and start to curb crime in the area.

It was made possible through downtown businesses banding together and raising $150,000 in funds to pay for officer overtime.

Overall, crime downtown has dropped 6%.

Certain crimes like auto burglary, auto theft, commercial burglary and shootings both with and without injury have all dropped by double digits.

The only two crimes that have grown during TEAM’s deployment are robbery and residential burglary.

Chief Harold Medina said the program and the impact it’s had so far is something he takes great pride in.

“I’m incredibly proud and happy with several aspects of this, not just the statistical decrease in crime and a lot of the things we’re seeing. But the way our officers have stepped up to be community policing officers and how every downtown business knows who our downtown public safety officers are.”

The department also shared how TEAM’s impact affects crime cycles.

Prior to their activation, Wednesday’s were the days with the highest crime based on data collected.

Once TEAM’s was activated, officers targeted crime hotspots on Wednesday nights and saw almost an immediate decrease in criminal activity.

A similar decline was also seen in traffic related issues that occurred on Saturdays and Sundays.

Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller says while the city still has more work to do in regards to public safety, this has been a good starting point.

“I think right now we are seeing early indications that this is helping. I think it is acknowledged now that downtown feels a little bit safer. Does it have a long way to go? Absolutely. Do we have a long way to go in general? Absolutely, but I do want to acknowledge that this is having an impact.”

Gino Gutierrez was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A lifelong resident of New Mexico, he found interest in broadcasting after falling in love with sports. He attended the University of New Mexico, where he majored in multimedia journalism. While at UNM, he worked the New Mexico Daily Lobo, serving as both sports and managing editor. In addition to working at KSFR, Gino is a freelance photojournalist and can also be heard providing play-by-play commentary for the NA3HL New Mexico Ice Wolves.