By Max Chantha
Recent years have seen a rise in publicity for police unions and their leaders, most famous for their unquestioning defense of criminal officers and leadership that spouts vitriolic rhetoric.
Stephanie Lopez, president of the Albuquerque Police Officers Association (APOA), proved this stereotype to be true, and herself as both a bully and a criminal, after being arrested for beating her underage daughter.
Lopez was charged with child abuse and booked on a $5,000 bond after causing great bodily harm to her daughter.
The daughter was struck repeatedly in the head, had her hair pulled, and was thrown to the ground by Lopez.
After reporting it to her school resource officers, the daughter and school administrators went to law enforcement – a somewhat brave act, considering her mother’s relationship with the police department.
As such, the Bernalillo County Sherriff’s Department, instead of the Albuquerque Police Department, undertook the investigation and subsequent arrest.
Lopez mirrored the tone of police unions, infamous for rejecting the responsibility of officers in countless misuse of force cases, when she said that it was in fact her daughter’s fault that she had been beaten.
Lopez stated that her daughter failed to inform her of a utility bill, and thus brought the beating on herself.
While this abhorrent behavior should result in her termination as president of the APOA, it remains unlikely.
Lopez, unsurprisingly, has faced accusations of various criminal behavior, including bribery and witness intimidation, and retaliation against those who seek to bring her officers to justice.