New Mexico

What to do here

Click a "Get Template" button to get an email template about a specific issue. Edit the template to connect on a more personal level with your lawmaker. See the Contacting Logistics page for information about how to write an effective email to your lawmakers. Get your lawmakers' emails with the search box to the right. Send the email!

Be sure to check out the Next Steps at the bottom of the page. Go to the References/Further Reading page to see our sources and do some research of your own.

Last updated March 5, 2020

Summary

Key:

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Legislation Achieved

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Some Progress

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No Progress

Demilitarization

Learn about demilitarization and the specific issues below on the Demilitarization page (opens in a new window).

 

No knock warrants

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law eliminating the use of no-knock warrants. Locally, Santa Fe passed an ordinance in October 2020 that bans the use of no knock warrants.

Pending Legislation: SB 227, introduced in January 2021, bans the use of no-knock warrants.

1033 purchases

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law ending its participation in programs that facilitate the transfer of military weapons from the federal government to police departments. Locally, the Albuquerque City Council voted to prohibit the Albuquerque Police Department from purchasing weaponized aircraft, grenade launchers, explosives and firearms of .50 caliber or higher from the federal government. The legislation also would prevent the city from taking military riot helmets and riot batons.

Military style training

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law refocusing training away from self-defense responses and towards community centered training like that offered by Blue Courage. HM3, a bill proposed in June 2020 to address the militarization of police training, was tabled until the January 2021 session.

Pending Legislation: SB 227 also mandates de-escalation training for all law enforcement officers.

SWAT data

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law requiring the recording and cataloging of SWAT team use.

For Profit Policing

Learn about for profit policing and the specific issues below on the For Profit Policing page (opens in a new window).

 

Civil asset forfeiture

Achieved:

In 2015, Governor Susana Martinez (R) signed House Bill 560 into law, requiring a criminal conviction to seize any assets.

Quotas

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law ending quotas for low-level arrests.

Cost of misconduct

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law requiring police departments (not state general funds) to cover the cost of misconduct.

Broken Windows Policing

Learn about broken windows policing and the specific issues below on the Broken Windows Policing page (opens in a new window).

 

Minor offenses

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law decriminalizing minor offenses that do not threaten public safety such as spitting and loitering.

Objective justification for stops

Some Progress:

In New Mexico, the Office of Attorney General maintains a detailed manual which bans pretextual stops. However, the current language is too ambiguous and does not ban stops based on movement or the area (in fact it says the officer should base it on observation which could be that it was a high crime area.)

Reporting stop details

No Progress:

New Mexico does not require officers to make detailed reporting of each stop by including race, gender, use of force, and presence of a firearm

Pending Legislation: SB 227, introduced in January 2021, would require mandate the reporting of the “age, sex, race and ethnicity of each
injured or deceased person involved" in a use of force incident.

Accountability

Learn about accountability and the specific issues below on the Accountability page (opens in a new window).

 

Reckless civil rights violation

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law lowering the prosecution requirement from ‘willful’ to ‘reckless’ deprivation of another’s rights.

Independent investigation

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law institutionalizing an independent prosecutor within the state’s Department of Justice for instances of police misconduct. HB 7 and SB 17, introduced in 2020, outline that the DA can "request that the attorney general select an assistant attorney general or appoint a district attorney from a different judicial district or a practicing member of the bar of this state as a special prosecutor to evaluate the matter for prosecution." Both bills died in committee.

Pending Legislation: SB 274, introduced in January 2021, establishes that "the department of public safety shall be the
default primary investigative agency charged with investigating
instances of peace officers using deadly force resulting in
great bodily harm or death and any other in-custody death. "

Qualified immunity

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law ending qualified immunity. However, the state passed legislation (HB5: NM Civil Rights Commission) which creates a commission that will "review policies and develop policy proposals for laws for the prohibition or limitation of the use of qualified immunity.

Pending Legislation: HB 4, introduced in January 2021, prohibits officers accused of misconduct from using a defense of qualified immunity.

Reinvesting in Communities

Learn about reinvesting in communities and the specific issues below on the Reinvesting in Communities page (opens in a new window).

 

Mental health response

No Progress:

New Mexico has not yet enacted a law creating and funding a mental health task force available to respond to crisis calls (in lieu of police). At a local level, "The Albuquerque Community Safety department is restructuring thousands of calls on homelessness, addiction and mental health into the hands of trained professionals; keep officers focused on core police work and reform efforts."

Education, Housing, Community Health Resources

No Progress:

It is important to note that policing does not address the roots of social disadvantage and barriers to (economic) opportunity that often lead to crime. Nor should police be burdened with that responsibility.
Without access to quality resources in healthcare, education, and housing, our cities, neighborhoods, and families will continue to suffer. We should instead reassess the budgets of the state government and reinvest in the services that matter most.

Next Steps

No matter what, register to vote:

Contacting officials is just one piece of the puzzle we can't stop there. We need to make sure our elected officials reflect our values and support reform at every level of government. Register here:

To keep these policies at the forefront:

Keep emailing about them (if you just finished the 5 Days Challenge, keep up the schedule—set reminders in your phone to email about each issue on its specific day).

To ask for more than this:

Use our templates as a model to ask for bigger changes. Color for Change and The Movement for Black Lives both have specific policy related to a reimagined law enforcement system. If you think there are additional policies we ought to consider, send your thoughts our way.

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