APD settlement costs rise in 2010, 2011

From KRQE-TV - ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Over the past two years combined, the city of Albuquerque has paid out more than $8 million to settle police misconduct cases. The Albuquerque Journal reports that in the previous eight years, the city had paid nearly $10 million to resolve such cases. Mayor Richard Berry has done away with his predecessor Martin Chavez's policy of settling a limited number of cases. Chavez, now running for Congress, in the past has defended his limited settlement policy and has said the city prevailed in almost every case instead of paying out. But Rob Perry, Albuquerque's chief administrative officer, said the Chavez administration saddled Berry's team with a high number of unresolved cases and said that while payouts have gone up, the city could have lost more money in some cases if it had gone to trial. All but five of the 60 payouts in 2010 and 2011 stemmed from cases that were initiated during Chavez's tenure as mayor, Perry said. The city felt it was in its best economic interest to settle some of the cases, he said. A statement from the president and vice president of the Albuquerque Police Officers Association says the policy shift amounts to a lack of support for police officers from the city administration. Read more


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