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Thursday, April 07, 2016

Questions Arise Over APD Chief Eden's Role In Handling Of Double-Homicide Case, Plus: Houston Offers ABQ A Bus Lesson 

Someone might want to ask APD just who the officers were who pulled over a suspect's car in that sensational murder of two brothers at the House of Pho restaurant at San Mateo and Montgomery Monday afternoon and then witnessed that suspect commit suicide by gunshot. If former APD officer Tom Grover, now an attorney in private practice, has it right it was none other than Chief Gorden Eden and two of his officers.

The city does not respond to questions from this blog, but if Eden and his officers--who Grover says responded to the crime when they heard of it while lunching at Christy Maes restaurant on San Pedro--did indeed make the stop, they may have made a major error in how they handle the case. Grover explains:

When a suspect has been stopped in a traffic stop by the police and that suspect commits suicide it's treated as an "in custody death." That means other law enforcement is immediately called to investigate. It is my understanding that was not done in this case Also, per APD special orders, all traffic stops are to be video recorded. This one was apparently not. Isn't it  time we demand APD's top brass act the same way they demand of their officers?

By not treating the suicide as an in custody death, Chief Eden and his officers could be in violation of the agreement APD has entered with the US Justice Department which has mandated reforms at the department. We'll keep you posted.

HOUSTON CALLING

Attention Mayor Berry and city transit chief Bruce Rizzieri. A number of our readers say go to Houston to discover how to improve our bus system without ripping up historic Route 66 with the ART project:

Not long ago, Houston’s bus service befit a version of the city out of the 1950s. Despite decades of decentralized urban growth, most bus lines still zig-zagged into one small section of the downtown core, where only 25 percent of the region’s jobs are located. Route redundancies were rampant. . . Frequent service (meaning buses arriving every 15 minutes or faster) was mostly limited to weekday rush hours.

But as a new short documentary from Streetfilms recounts, one Sunday morning in August 2015, Houstonians awoke to a completely re-envisioned system. . . A less redundant, more grid-like network of routes “vastly expanded the reach of frequent service” and offered all-day, all-week service on several key lines, according to Human Transit’s Jarrett Walker, who worked with the city as a consultant on the redesign. Houston Metro was able to transform the system largely by trimming and tightening unnecessary routes, with no significant additional costs. 

The problem for ABQ's bus system is not making buses faster on already heavily serviced Central Avenue--as the $119 million ART project envisions--but to expand the system and provide frequent service to busy streets like Lomas and Montgomery as was done in Houston. . .

Reader Maria Bautista writes of our coverage of the lawsuits filed against the ART project this week by Central Avenue businesses:

Joe, Re your reference to Western View restaurant on West Central Avenue as "small fry." They have been in busy 35 years and are never empty. . . The media has talked about Nob Hill, excluding the other 300 businesses opposed to ART. It clearly demonstrates to me that they are really not aware of the connections between West Central, Nob Hill or East Central. . .We have an Organizational Group and have been sitting with these communities. Calling Western View small fry compared to the well known "Flying Star" serves to separate the issue, and the issue is ART. The complaint and preliminary injunction request caught Mayor Berry and his Band of Developers with their pants down, Once in awhile acknowledge the great community work being done, write about the stories on Central, the people's stories.

Thanks for your comments, criticism, opinions and idle chatter about the issues of the day.

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