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BernCo Commission Defers Decision On Review Of Sheriff's Department Use Of Force

Tony Webster via Flickr
Creative Commons

Bernalillo County commissioners voted on Tuesday to wait 30 days before deciding whether to hire an outside company to scrutinize the sheriff’s department after a spike in shootings by officers.


The commissioners and Bernalillo County Sheriff Manuel Gonzales all agreed that the review is necessary. But Gonzales said he wanted more time to research who is suitable for the job.


"When we examine these things, there’s a limited number of professionals who can review these types of policies," Gonzales said, "and we want to make sure we get the right people to do that."


They’re doing a nationwide search for auditors, Gonzales said, and they’ll let commissioners know what they find.


Commissioner Maggie Hart Stebbins, who introduced the measure, told the sheriff she respects what his office does, but that the spike in shootings is a legitimate cause for concern and should be treated as an urgent matter.


The commission will revisit the measure towards the end of March.


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