Gov. MLG Declares Gun Violence Public Health Emergency; Public Health Care Order Issued Suspending Open and Concealed Gun Carry Laws;  Lawsuit Filed Claiming Orders Violate Second Amendment Rights; Governor’s Actions ILL Advised And She Should Retract Orders; Enact “Omnibus Gun Control And Violent Crime Sentencing Act”

On Thursday, September 7 Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed an Executive Order declaring gun violence and drug abuse a statewide public health emergency and declaring what she called an “epidemic of gun violence” in New Mexico. The executive order was signed in the wake of a road-rage shooting death of an 11-year-old boy leaving Isotopes Park Wednesday, September 6. Lujan Grisham also cited the shooting deaths of 3 teenagers or children since late July, including the 5-year-old girl killed while sleeping in a mobile home in mid-August.

The executive order sets aside $750,000 in emergency funds to help pay for the order and  protect public safety while also minimizing economic or physical harm. The governor also  appointed  former New Mexico State Police Chief Pete Kassetas to head up a task force on gun violence.

The Governor said she would meet with law enforcement and criminal justice officials to strategize over how to crack down on gun violence. The public health emergency will be in effect until October 6.

The executive order was a accompanied by a letter Lujan Grisham sent to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, the fourth in a year, urging him to assign federal agents to New Mexico to help tackle escalating gun violence. Lujan Grisham said in her letter to AG Garland:

“Attorney General Garland, I have asked you — in fact begged you — to send additional federal agents to New Mexico on multiple occasions, only to be met with deafening silence.”

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said this when she signed the executive order:

“I want to know that every parent is making sure their guns are locked up. I want to know that district attorneys and judges are using every tool at their disposal to hold bad actors accountable. I want to know that every gun store is not allowing straw purchases. I want to know that every law enforcement agency is using our red flag law.  … But until that happens in every community in our state, New Mexicans will continue to die.”

In a news release, Lujan Grisham also called on Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller to “take every possible action to stem the flow of illegal drugs and guns into your city.”

Mayor Tim Keller’s office spokesperson Ava Montoya said in response to the Governor’s executive order:

“This is a powerful opportunity for leaders to listen to Albuquerque police officers. We welcome any and all help, from dealing with the national fentanyl problem to statewide gun violence laws and extra officers in Albuquerque. … The sooner we can get past finger pointing to real solutions, the more lives we can save.”

You can read the entire Executive Order at this link:

Click to access Executive-Order-2023-132.pdf

The link to news source material is here:


On Friday, September 8, pursuant to Governor Lujan Grisham’s Executive Order declaring gun violence and illegal drugs a public health emergency, NM Secretary of Health Patrick M. Allen Secretary issued a sweeping Public Health Oder. The new public health order became effective Friday, September 8.  After 30 days, the Governor said they will evaluate whether they should renew the order or make adjustments.

You can read the Public Health Order here at this link:


The Public Health Order bans the carrying of firearms, concealed or openly, in any public space in Bernalillo County and any state property in New Mexico. Specifically, no firearms are allowed on state property, including state buildings and schools. This also includes other places of education where children gather, such as parks.

The Public Health Order is a statewide mandate, but it only suspends open and concealed carry laws in communities with extremely high violent crime rates and firearm-related emergency room visits which as it stands only includes Albuquerque.

The Public Health Order requires monthly inspections of licensed firearm dealers and wastewater testing for certain drugs, such as fentanyl, at all public schools.

The Regulation and Licensing Division will conduct monthly inspections of licensed firearm dealers to ensure compliance with all sales and storage laws.

The Department of Health, along with the Environment Department, will begin wastewater testing for illegal substances such as fentanyl at schools.

The Department of Health will compile and issue a comprehensive report on gunshot victims presenting at hospitals in New Mexico, which shall include and if available:

  1. Demographic data of gunshot victims, including age, gender, race, and ethnicity;
  2. Data on gunshot victim’s healthcare outcomes;
  3. The brand and caliber of the firearm used;
  4. The general circumstances leading to the injury;
  5. The impact of gunshot victims on New Mexico’s healthcare system;
  6. Any other pertinent information

New Mexico State Police will add officers in Albuquerque with funding for overtime provided.

The Children, Youth and Families Department will immediately suspend the Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative and evaluate juvenile probation protocols.

Violating the public health order could result in civil citations and penalties and a fine of up to $5,000.


There are several exceptions to the order. The public health order does not impact private property, licensed firearm dealers, firing ranges, or shooting competitions. However, under the order anyone traveling between those locations must store their guns in a locked container or safety box. Firearm owners who would like a free trigger lock can call (505) 984-3085 or email

The order does not apply to law enforcement officers or licensed security officers.

The Governor explained during her September 8 news conference how the order will affect New Mexico’s open carry law and she said this:

“No person other than a law enforcement officers or licensed security officers shall possess a firearm either openly or concealed within cities or counties, averaging 1,000 or more violent crimes per 100,000 and more than 90 firearm-related emergency department visits.”

According to those standards, Bernalillo County and Albuquerque are the only two places in the state right now that are affected by the emergency order.


On September 8,  Governor Lujan Grisham held a news conference  announcing the Public Health Order accompanied by Department of Public Safety Deputy Cabinet Secretary Benjamin Baker, Bernalillo County Sherriff John Allen, APD Chief Harold Medina and former State Police Chief Pete Kassetas who she announced she appointed as Crime Reduction Director.

Lujan Grisham announced that immediate efforts to enforce the orders will include sending a “significant” number of State Police officers to help authorities fight crime and arrest wanted individuals in Bernalillo County. The Governor declined to put a number on how many state police officers would be sent to Albuquerque.

In 2019, Lujan Grisham did something similar, known as the Metro Surge Operation, after University of New Mexico baseball player Jackson Weller was fatally shot in Albuquerque. The Metro Surge Operation resulted in many of the prosecutions falling apart when State Police the officers did not show up to hearings because they had returned home across the state where they lived after the Metro Surge Operation ended.

Lujan Grisham responded to questions regarding the failures of the Metro Surge by saying:

“Unlike the surge, which worked, it wasn’t sustained. And the initial surge didn’t have all of the operational impacts that it needed — lessons learned. … We’re going to have to make sure that our resources are aligned, including prosecutorial resources, so that we don’t let bad actors off the hook because we don’t have the right people in the right place with the right information to pursue a prosecution.”

Governor Lujan Grisham acknowledged that homicides in Bernalillo County and Albuquerque are down from last year, but she said more needs to be done. She said this about the Public Health Order:

“The purpose is to try to create a cooling off period while we figure out how we can better address public safety and gun violence.  … No one right now in New Mexico, particularly in Albuquerque, is safe at a movie theater, at a park, at a school, at a grocery store, at an Isotopes game … You just aren’t safe. I can’t guarantee it and neither can the men and the women who put on a uniform every day.”

The Governor acknowledged the ban was “a sacrifice” for responsible gun owners and she said “responsible gun owners are certainly not our problem [and] have never been our problem.” She also said not all law enforcement leaders in Bernalillo County and across the state agreed with the gun ban and she stressed  that State Police officers dispatched to the area would enforce it.

As for enforcement, Governor Lujan Grisham admitted enforcement will be “complicated”. She said her office is working with New Mexico State Police and District Attorneys on how it will work. The governor says anyone caught breaking the order will fall under a “civil violation” connected to her public health order.

The Governor said she does not  expect criminals to follow the order but  she hopes the order  is “a resounding message,” to everyone else in the community to report gun crime. The Governor said this:

“The point here is, is that, if everyone did it, and I wasn’t legally challenged, you would have fewer risks on the street, and I could safely say, to every New Mexican, particularly those folks living in Albuquerque and Bernalillo County, I believe that you’re safer for the next 30 days, we have to wait and see.”

At the end of the 30 day Public Health Order enforcement period, the Governor said a data assessment will be made and a  decision will be made  on whether to remove the order. However the Governor said this:

“[I] bet it’s not over in 30 days. … And I’m sure some things will work better than others, and I’m sure things will get adjusted, and I’m sure I’ll get restrictions that make it clear what it can and cannot do. … And we keep fighting until every child, every family, every neighbor, every community, every city, every village is the safest it can possibly be in the state of New Mexico.”


During her September 8 press conference, Governor Lujan Grisham said the Public Health Order will likely face a legal challenge.  Lujan Grisham said this:

“I can invoke additional powers. … No constitutional right, in my view, including my oath, is intended to be absolute. … I’ve warned everyone that we expect a direct challenge, probably as you’re writing this we’re getting a challenge, and that’s the way it should work. But I have to take a tough direct stand, or basically I’m just ignoring the fact that we lost an 11-year-old, another child.”

Zachary Fort with the New Mexico Shooting Sports Association said the organization is already prepared to legally challenge the order and will file a lawsuit within days. Fort said this:

“What the governor [is trying to] … do flies directly in the face of  [New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen the] decision by the Supreme Court, where they found that you have a constitutionally protected right to carry a firearm outside your own home. … The Supreme Court said that very clearly in their Bruen decision. So, it’s clearly contradictory to that.”

EDITOR’S NOTE:  In the June 2022 Bruen case, the United states Supreme Court expanded the right of law-abiding Americans to carry guns in public for self-defense. The case ruling takes away the ability to take into account arguments about a compelling government interest, like the gun violence that Lujan Grisham said prompted her order. Now, judges must solely rely on whether any similar historical examples exist.

On September 9, a federal  lawsuit was filed arguing the Public Health Order is unconstitutional in violation of the second amendment and by not allowing citizens to exercise their right to carry firearms. The federal lawsuit was filed by Albuquerque resident Foster Allen Haines in conjunction with the National Association for Gun Rights, or NAGR, claiming that Lujan Grisham’s order is unconstitutional and seeking damages. Timothy White, the attorney who filed the suit said this to the Albuquerque Journal:

“Nothing else to say really, just that the NAGR and Mr. Haines represent thousands of New Mexicans that are not going to put up with tyranny.”

Links to quoted news sources are here:


Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina for his part said during the press conference APD would not be enforcing the order.  Medina emphasized that doing so could violate the APD’s police reform settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice. Chief Medina  emphasized the need to keep people charged in certain crimes in jail until trial but also to provide resources to the Metropolitan Detention Center, where 26 people have died since 2020 from a variety of causes, many of them health-related.

Bernalillo County Sherriff John Allen, although appearing at the press conference with the Governor, expressed serious reservations about the Governor’s orders.  Sherriff Allen issued a press release saying as much and which said in part:

“Today, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham issued an emergency order temporarily suspending open and concealed carry laws in Albuquerque and throughout Bernalillo County for the next 30 days. This move has been positioned as a response to the alarming and tragic rise in gun violence, particularly the heart-wrenching death of an 11-year-old boy this past week.

However, as the elected Sheriff, I have reservations regarding this order. While I understand and appreciate the urgency, the temporary ban challenges the foundation of our Constitution, which I swore an oath to uphold. I am wary of placing my deputies in positions that could lead to civil liability conflicts, as well as the potential risks posed by prohibiting law-abiding citizens from their constitutional right to self-defense.”

On September 9 Bernalillo County District Attorney Sam Bregman, who was  appointed by Lujan Grisham in January to fill the unexpired term of Raul Torrez who was elected Attorney General, joined Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller and Police Chief Harold Medina saying they would not enforce the order.

“As an officer of the court, I cannot and will not enforce something that is clearly unconstitutional. … This office will continue to focus on criminals of any age that use guns in the commission of a crime.”


Republican Public officials were quick to react and condemn Governor Lujan Grisham’s orders.

On September 9,  state Republican Representative Stefani Lord of Sandia Park and John Block of Alamogordo called for Lujan Grisham’s impeachment, saying her order violates constitutional rights and is “illegal in nature.” Lord said this:

“This is an abhorrent attempt at imposing a radical, progressive agenda on an unwilling populous.  … I have a newsflash for the Governor: The Second Amendment is an absolute right, and so is my authority to impeach you for violating your oath to New Mexico and the United States.”

New Mexico Senate Republican Leader Greg Baca issued the following statement:

“A child is murdered, the perpetrator is still on the loose, and what does the governor do? She throws the mayor of Albuquerque under the bus and then targets law-abiding citizens with an unconstitutional gun order. Tragically, this is what we have come to expect from an administration that refuses to take responsibility for the crime epidemic gripping our state. It is time for the governor to stop pointing fingers and admit that her soft-on-crime approach has failed and put the safety of all New Mexicans in great jeopardy.”

NM House Republican Leader Ryan Lane issued the following statement:

“It is unfortunate that the Governor has decided to politicize the death of an 11-year-old to push her anti-gun agenda. What’s likewise unfortunate is that with billions in revenue this state has not funded meaningful criminal justice reform including addressing reckless pre-trial release policies and behavioral health rehabilitation. The Democrat’s policies have created and exacerbated the crime crisis that is literally killing New Mexicans daily. It is unacceptable that it has taken this long to notice the number of everyday New Mexicans that are being affected by criminal violence.”

Republican Party of New Mexico Chairman Steve Pierce issued the following statement:

“She knew her order was illegal and did it anyway, just like the lawbreakers in our state. Criminals will not be affected by more laws since they don’t follow our laws now nor are they held responsible for breaking any of them.”

Republican and Former Governor Susana Martinez said this:

We cannot have political grandstanding, reckless and unconstitutional “emergency health orders’ being issued that do nothing to criminals, but instead take aim at law abiding citizens. Stripping gun rights of law-abiding citizens does not decrease crime rates. In fact, it leaves law abiding citizens more vulnerable and helpless against those who commit violent crimes.”

Republican Bernalillo County Commissioner Walt Benson said Lujan Grisham is punishing law-abiding citizens instead of pursuing violent criminals “with vigor” and  called the order “an overreach against the wrong population.” Commissioner Benson said this:

“The people with concealed carry, they’re not the problem out there. They’re the sheepdogs that are out there, those are the people that you do trust.  It’s the criminals with illegal guns and no respect for life. And no respect for laws. They’re the ones that you have to worry about.”

Links to quoted news sources are here:


Governor Michelle Lujan’s Grisham’s issuance of the Executive Orders should not come as any  surprise and are likely motivated in part by the sure frustration she is likely experiencing with the failure of the New Mexico legislature doing anything meaningful when it comes to gun control. For that reasons, the legislation that failed in the 2023 New Mexico legislature merits review.

The 2023 New Mexico 60 day legislative began on January 17 and  came to an abrupt end on March 18 at 12 noon as did the fate of major gun control measures. Upwards of 40 gun control measures were introduced, but only 10 were seriously considered and of those 10, only 2 made it through the session to become law.

When the session began on January 17, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham in  her “State of the State” address announced her support of the following 4 gun control measures:

  • Banning the sale of AR-15-style rifles.
  • Allowing crime victims to sue gun manufacturers.
  • Making it a crime to fail to properly secure a firearm that’s accessible to an unsupervised minor.
  • Closing a loophole in state law to allow prosecution when a person buys a gun for a someone who isn’t legally able to make the purchase themselves, a transaction known as a straw purchase.


There were 10 major gun-control measure bills introduced and seriously considered in the New Mexico House or Senate. Those measures were:

House Bill 9 is the Bennie Hargrove Gun Safety Act also know as “Bennies Bill” make it a misdemeanor to negligently allow a child access to a firearm and would make it a felony if that negligence resulted in someone dying or suffering great bodily harm.

House Bill 50 prohibits magazines with more than 10 rounds.

House Bill 72 prohibits possession of semiautomatic firearm converter that allows the weapon to fire more rapidly.

House Bill 100 would establish a 14-day waiting period for the purchase of any firearm and requires a prospective seller who doesn’t already hold a valid federal firearms license to arrange for someone who does to conduct a federal background check prior to selling a firearm.

House Bill 101 as written would have  made it a fourth-degree felony to purchase, possess, manufacture, import, sell or transfer assault weapons in the state.  It would restrict the sale, manufacture and possession of AR-15-style rifles along with semiautomatic firearms.

House Bill 306 sought to prevent gun straw purchases, a type of firearm purchase where someone buys a firearm for another person who is legally banned from owning firearms, such as a convicted felon.

Senate Bill 44 would make it a misdemeanor to carry a firearm within 100 feet of a polling location on election day or during early voting. On-duty law enforcement officers and security personnel would be exempt.

Senate Bill 116 would establish a minimum age of 21 for anyone seeking to purchase or possess an automatic firearm, semiautomatic firearm or firearm capable of accepting a large-capacity magazine. The bill would effectively raise the minimum age for buying an AR-15-style rifle from 18 to 21.

Senate Bill 171 sought to ban the manufacture, sale, trade, gift, transfer or acquisition of semiautomatic pistols that have two or more defined characteristics.

Senate Bill 428 would have revised the state’s Unfair Practices Act to target the sale of illegal firearms and parts, allowing the filing of lawsuits to enforce the act.


On March 18,  at the conclusion of the 2023 Legislative Session, only 2 of the 10 bills were enacted by the legislature, only 1 bill has been signed into law by the Governor,  2 advanced through one chamber and  awaited  action in another, 2 awaited action in both chambers and 4  never made it out of any committee.


The following legislation was enacted:

  1. House Bill 9: The bill is referred to as “Bennies Bill”  and makes it a crime to store a firearm in a way that negligently disregards the ability of a minor to access it.  On March 14, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham sign the legislation into law
  2. House Bill 306: Prohibit buying a firearm for another person who is legally banned from purchasing it on their own.


The following legislation advanced through one  chamber but was not voted upon in the second chamber:

  1. Senate Bill 44: Prohibit carrying a firearm within 100 feet of a polling place during an election.
  2. Senate Bill 428: Include firearms in the Unfair Practices Act


The following passed one chamber but was not voted on by the second:

  1. House Bill 100: Establish a 14-day waiting period for the purchase of a firearm
  2. Senate Bill 427: Establish a 14-day waiting period, but with an exception for buyers who have a permit to carry a concealed firearm.


The following bills were referred to a committee but they were never voted  out of committee:

  1. Senate Bill 116: Raise the minimum age to 21 for purchasing or possessing an automatic or semiautomatic firearm.
  2. House Bill 101: Prohibit sale or possession of assault weapons and assault weapon attachments.
  3. Senate Bill 428 would include firearms in the Unfair Practices Act
  4. House Bill 50 prohibits magazines with more than 10 rounds.


There is absolutely no doubt that gun violence and violent crime are out of control in Albuquerque and in the state driven by the proliferation of guns and illicit drugs. Notwithstanding, Governor Michelle Lujan’s Grisham’s Executive Oder as well as the Public Health Care Order are very ill advised and they are unconstitutional.

Simply put, there is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the United States Constitution. The orders will likely be found so broad as to be a clear violation of US Constitutional Rights and the Second Amendment Right to Bear Arms. The blunt reality is that the Governor’s Executive Order and Public Health Order  will not result in reducing gun violence nor address the proliferation of guns.

The Governor’s actions will accomplish nothing other than ginning up Republican and Second Amendment Rights advocate ire that in turn will contribute nothing to the discussion of real solutions to the state’s gun violence and high violent crime rates. Absent from the Governor’s September 7 and 8th press conferences was the presence of any of the New Mexico legislature Democratic leadership and that is very troubling.


Governor Lujan Grisham should immediately cancel and withdraw her Executive Order and the Public Health Care orders.  The issuance of the orders will likely result in the Governor’s poll numbers of support to plummet given New Mexico’s “gun culture” which is too bad and a self inflicted wound.  It will not be the first time where Lujan Grisham issues Executive Orders that negatively impact her popularity. Her Public Health Care Orders regarding the Covid Pandemic had an impact on her popularity, but at least those orders could be easily justified involving a legitimate health care crisis and those health care orders were indeed constitutional and likely saved lives.  

Rather than issuing executive orders declaring a public health crisis that were ostensibly a knee jerk reaction to the killing of a child in a road rage incident, the Governor’s efforts would be better spent on proposing meaningful legislation she wants in the upcoming 2024 legislative session which begins on January 16, 2024.  The session is the 30 short session where the Governor will dictate what measures can be considered.


The current makeup of the New Mexico legislature is 45 Democrats and 25 Republicans in the House with 27 Democrats and 15 Republicans in the Senate.  What is very discouraging is the fact that the New Mexico legislature is decidedly in control by Democrats, yet very little to no progress is every made when it comes to gun control measures as Republicans out maneuver Democrats by relying on Democrats who also oppose gun control.

If Governor Lujan Grisham is  indeed sincere about the State’s crime crisis  she should propose the enactment of an “Omnibus Gun Control And Violent Crime Sentencing Act.”


The message that must be sent out loud and clear to violent criminals by our elected officials is that New Mexico has a zero tolerance of violent crimes committed with firearms and the only way to do that is with with enhanced sentencings.

The following crime and sentencing provisions should be included in the “Omnibus Gun Control And Violent Crime Sentencing  Act”:

Allow firearm offenses used in a drug crimes to be charged separately with enhance sentences.

Making possession of a handgun by someone who commits a crime of drug trafficking an aggravated third-degree felony mandating a 10-year minimum sentence.

Increase the firearm enhancement penalties provided for the brandishing a firearm in the commission of a felony from 3 years to 10 years for a first offense and for a second or subsequent felony in which a firearm is brandished 12 years.

Create a new category of enhanced sentencing for use of a lethal weapon or deadly weapon other than a firearm where there is blandishment of a deadly weapon in the commission of a felony with enhanced sentences of 5 years for a first offense and for second or subsequent felony in which a lethal weapon other than a firearm is brandished 8 years

Increase the penalty of shooting randomly into a crowded area a second-degree felony mandating a 9-year sentence.

Increase the penalty and mandatory sentencing for the conviction of the use of a fire arm during a road rage incident to a first degree felony mandating a life sentence.

Change bail bond to statutorily empower judges with far more discretionary authority to hold and jail those pending trial who have prior violent crime reported incidents without shifting the burden of proof from the prosecution to the defense.


Gun control measures that should be included the “Omnibus Gun Control And  Violent Crime Sentencing  Act” would include all 8 bills that failed in the 2023 legislative session and other measures and would include the following:

Call for the repeal the New Mexico Constitutional provision that allows the “open carry” of firearms. This would require a public vote and no doubt generate heated discussion given New Mexico’s high percentage of gun ownership for hunting, sport or hobby, but what is the real rational for allowing side arms and rifles to be carried down the street other than to intimidate others.

Restrict the sale, manufacture and possession of AR-15-style rifles along with semiautomatic firearms and make it a fourth-degree felony to purchase, possess, manufacture, import, sell or transfer assault weapons in the state.

Prohibited magazines with more than 10 rounds.

Prohibited the possession of semiautomatic firearm converter that allows the weapon to fire more rapidly.

Established a 14-day waiting period for the purchase of any firearm and requires a prospective seller who doesn’t already hold a valid federal firearms license to arrange for someone who does to conduct a federal background check prior to selling a firearm.

Established a minimum age of 21 for anyone seeking to purchase or possess an automatic firearm, semiautomatic firearm or firearm capable of accepting a large-capacity magazine.

Ban the manufacture, sale, trade, gift, transfer or acquisition of semiautomatic pistols that have two or more defined characteristics.

Revised the state’s Unfair Practices Act to target the sale of illegal firearms and parts, allowing the filing of lawsuits to enforce the act.

Prohibit in New Mexico the sale of “ghost guns” parts. Ghost guns are guns that are manufactured and sold in parts without any serial numbers to be assembled by the purchaser and that can be sold to anyone.

Require in New Mexico the mandatory purchase of “liability insurance” with each gun sold as is required for all operable vehicles bought and driven in New Mexico.

Mandate the school systems and higher education institutions “harden” their facilities with more security doors, security windows, and security measures and alarm systems and security cameras tied directly to law enforcement 911 emergency operations centers.

The Omnibus Gun Control And Violent Crime Sentencing  Act Omnibus Gun Violence And Sentencing  Act  must include funding for the criminal justice system. This would include funding District Attorney’s Offices, the Public Defender’s Office, the Courts and the Corrections Department and law enforcement departments across New Mexico.


Until the Governor and the New Mexico legislature get serious about New Mexico’s gun violence crisis and enacts reasonable gun control measures in conjunction with crime and punishment measures, we can expect our violent crime rates to continue to increase, and God forbid, yet another killing of a child.

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Pete Dinelli was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is of Italian and Hispanic descent. He is a 1970 graduate of Del Norte High School, a 1974 graduate of Eastern New Mexico University with a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration and a 1977 graduate of St. Mary's School of Law, San Antonio, Texas. Pete has a 40 year history of community involvement and service as an elected and appointed official and as a practicing attorney in Albuquerque. Pete and his wife Betty Case Dinelli have been married since 1984 and they have two adult sons, Mark, who is an attorney and George, who is an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). Pete has been a licensed New Mexico attorney since 1978. Pete has over 27 years of municipal and state government service. Pete’s service to Albuquerque has been extensive. He has been an elected Albuquerque City Councilor, serving as Vice President. He has served as a Worker’s Compensation Judge with Statewide jurisdiction. Pete has been a prosecutor for 15 years and has served as a Bernalillo County Chief Deputy District Attorney, as an Assistant Attorney General and Assistant District Attorney and as a Deputy City Attorney. For eight years, Pete was employed with the City of Albuquerque both as a Deputy City Attorney and Chief Public Safety Officer overseeing the city departments of police, fire, 911 emergency call center and the emergency operations center. While with the City of Albuquerque Legal Department, Pete served as Director of the Safe City Strike Force and Interim Director of the 911 Emergency Operations Center. Pete’s community involvement includes being a past President of the Albuquerque Kiwanis Club, past President of the Our Lady of Fatima School Board, and Board of Directors of the Albuquerque Museum Foundation.