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The United States Department of Justice released a Findings Letter in connection with its investigation of the use of force by the Albuquerque Police Department from 2009 to early 2013. It found that APD had engaged in a pattern or practice of using excessive force, both lethal and non-lethal. The parties reached an agreement on October 31, 2014 and the Complaint and Settlement Agreement were filed in the United States District Court for the District of New Mexico for approval. This amicus brief was filed on behalf of The Albuquerque Peace and Justice Center, Hispano Round Table De Nuevo Mexico, Los Jardines Institute, Martin Luther King Memorial Center, New Mexico Forum For Youth In Community, New Mexico League of Latin American Citizens, New Mexico Old Lesbians Organized For Change, and Southwest Organizing Project. This brief addresses four issues. First, it asked the court to use the fairness hearing to educate the community about the process under the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, 42 U.S.C. §14141. It also asked the court to seek an explanation of why neither APD nor the officers involved in the constitutional violations delineated in the Findings Letter are subject to discipline or other sanctions in the Settlement Agreement or its acceptance of City of Albuquerques refusal to acknowledge any wrongdoing in light of the findings. Second, the brief argued that the Settlement Agreement does not adequately cover issues of race and biased policing and should be amended to do so. It also should be amended to include mechanisms to address issues pertaining to youth. Third, it requested amendments to the community engagement mechanisms. Finally, it urged the selection of a monitoring team that is diverse, includes law enforcement experience, police reform experience, legal experience with police oversight, crisis intervention for the mentally ill and homeless populations, familiarity with policing in a city with a substantial Hispanic population, a significant Native American population, and relatively small African American and Asian populations.

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Brief Amici Curiae


Albuquerque Police Department, Amicus Brief, City of Albuquerque, Excessive Force, United States Department of Justice, APD, findings letter

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