A Soldier in the Drug War Switches Sides
Conservative Judge James Gray was on the bench for 25 years in Orange County. He was a federal prosecutor and a Navy JAG before that. He ran for Congress as a Republican in the late ’90s and as a Libertarian for Senate a few years later.
Time to Register
Do it now or no ballot for you
We’ve gotten used to the lightning speed of the digital age. These days, we don’t have to wait for much. Want a T-shirt with your own face on it? I’m sure it can be printed, packaged and posted to your doorstep within three business days.
A Deadly Force
A range of public reactions to Albuquerque Police Department shootings took center stage at the Monday, Sept. 20 City Council meeting. So far this year, there have been 11 officer-involved shootings, and seven people have died. Brian Swainston and several other men said they saw the most recent incident, which happened Downtown on Tuesday, Sept. 14. Officer Leah Kelly shot Chandler Barr, who was cutting himself with what was later discovered to be a butter knife. Police Chief Ray Schultz says Barr lunged at Kelly.
The latest word in New Mexico government is “transparency.” Mayor Richard Berry’s administration released its new transparency website, ABQ View (cabq.gov/abq-view), on Aug. 25. Sunshine Review, a national nonprofit that focuses on the issue, says the city site “achieved not just every mark on Sunshine Review’s transparency checklist, but also nailed all our suggested data as well. Data is even downloadable in different formats.”
Odds & Ends
Dateline: Connecticut—A 37-year-old man who officially changed his name to “Almighty Supremeborn Allah” was arrested earlier this month after Special Services Unit officers found $2,000 worth of cocaine in his New Britain apartment. The New Britain Herald reports officers were executing a search warrant on Almighty Allah’s apartment when the suspect fled the scene. “He ran and the officers used a Taser to get him into custody,” Sgt. Jeanette Saccente told the newspaper. After Allah was subdued, officers searched his home—unironically located on High Street—and found three grams of cocaine on a bedroom dresser and a baggie with another 18 grams. Allah was charged with possession of narcotics, possession of narcotics with intent to sell, possession of narcotics within 1,500 feet of a school or public housing project, and interfering with police. A judge held Allah on $300,000 bond following an arraignment hearing.
My husband and I read the Alibi every week and were both very disappointed with this week's issue [Feature, “Who Watches the Watchmen?” Sept. 16-22]. Your cover title "Copwatch: 11 Shootings and Counting" suggested that the police here are trigger-happy and we should be concerned. The article then had nothing to do with the shootings. While oversight and community awareness would probably be a good thing, I would much rather read a well-researched report on the frequency of officer involved shootings here and how that compares with national and annual statistics. I personally cannot find these statistics easily, so I wish your newspaper would address this issue, especially if your front page is going to suggest that we should be concerned. Are we above average per capita? If so, why? Have these shootings been found to be unjustified? Before we scapegoat the men and women we call to protect us, I would like to read an article about the subject at hand, not a misleading, inflammatory, anecdotal story about a New York couple that doesn't like APD's attitude.
Weekly virtual dance party
Bernalillo County Open Space is hosting a series of livestreamed gardening events on the Bachechi Open Space Facebook page. On Saturday, August 8 starting at 2pm, A Gathering of Naturalists will have a panel discussion with members of the county’s master naturalist program about what a naturalist is, what they do, what projects they work on and some interesting facts about our metro area’s Open Space gems. This open to all-ages free discussion will include how the field of environmental conservation is evolving in an era of change due to the global COVID pandemic, social justice and the climate emergency. Not your style? Then what about on Saturday, August 22 at 2pm you check out a virtual field trip to look for the tracks and signs of wildlife that are found in our uniquely beautiful urban forest we call the Rio Grande Bosque. The virtual tour will be led by Michael Cox, a member of the county’s naturalist program and a volunteer at the Sandia Mountain Natural History Center. This free field trip is suitable for all ages of bug and critter trackers. For more info log on to www.bernco.gov/openspace.