'The justice system in New Mexico needs to come together to find real solutions' Julie Benner
ABQ FREE PRESS STAFF REPORT
Julie Benner, widow of slain Rio Rancho Police Department Officer Gregg ‘Nigel’ Benner, has joined New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas’ Violent Crimes Case Review Team.
The group seeks a comprehensive solution to breakdowns in New Mexico’s criminal justice system.
Gregg Benner was the first Rio Rancho police officer killed in the line of duty. He died after being shot on Memorial Day, allegedly by Andrew Romero, who was not in custody despite a known criminal record, substance abuse problems and gang activities.
“I don’t want anyone to go through the type of pain that I am experiencing,” Julie Benner said. “The justice system in New Mexico needs to come together to find real solutions and that is why I contacted Attorney General Balderas to support his Violent Crimes Case Review Team. I want to help in any way I can because it’s what Nigel would want me to do. I want New Mexico to truly become a safer state.”
Balderas said he was convening the review group “to identify short-term and long-term solutions to avoid future tragedies.”