The Albuquerque Police Department (APD) can search a mug shot database of more than 200,000 APD booking photos. The APD uses a Universal Facial Workstation (UFW) software platform provided by the FBI, which uses a Morpho algorithm (009202).
The APD face recognition procedural order, which the Department has not made public, states: “An officer shall have probable cause for an arrest (to include charges other than Concealing Identity) prior to submitting an image for Facial Recognition unless voluntary consent is obtained” (009202). Only authorized personnel of the Real Time Crime Center are allowed to run face recognition searches. Possible matches are considered investigative leads only and cannot be the sole basis for an arrest or detention (009203). The procedural order also states that when using face recognition, officers must adhere to department policies on improper or racial profiling (009203).
It is unclear if African Americans are overrepresented in the face recognition database; recent arrest data that is disaggregated by race does not appear to be available for Albuquerque. It’s also unclear if APD “scrubs” its database to eliminate people who were never charged, had charges dropped or dismissed, or were found innocent. APD does not appear to conduct audits of face recognition use; in response to our request for documentation of audits, APD stated that it “does not exist.” (016700).
Sources and Notes: APD, KRQE News 13 (Last updated: September2016). You can review our scorecard criteria in the Methodology section. Numerical citations, e.g. (123456), refer to official records available by clicking "View Documents" below.