The violent wave of crime plaguing New Mexico, specifically in Albuquerque, is forcing Walmart at 301 San Mateo Boulevard Southeast to close its doors after nearly 40 years in business at the location. The store is located in the War Zone, also known as the “International District,” known for its crime epidemic.
Walmart spokeswoman Lauren Willis said the store, which has 287 employees, was first opened at the location in 1985 — 38 years ago. The employees will be given the option to transfer to other locations in the city.
Business Insider recently reported, “Walmart did not answer questions about whether crime rates at the Albuquerque location were responsible for the decision to close it. But Albuquerque police officers had their hands full with the store in the past year. The Albuquerque Journal reports that 708 calls were made requesting police service at or near the store in 2022.”
According to a KOB 4 report, “Police were called to the Walmart at San Mateo near Central more than 1,400 times for various calls in 2019. That’s almost four calls every day.”
The closure of the Albuquerque location, as well as locations across crime-ridden states, came after Walmart President and CEO Doug McMillon warned last December that certain “stores will close” if high theft rates didn’t slow down.
Cleveland.com reported that the total number of Walmart location closures are as follows: “Arkansas (1 store), Georgia (2), Florida (1), Hawaii (1), Illinois (3), Indiana (1), Minnesota (1), New Mexico (1), Oregon (2), Texas (1), Washington (1), Washington, D.C. (1) and Wisconsin (1).”
Reports note how the shuttering of the Albuquerque Walmart “will impact lower-income residents,” as KRQE 13 reported.
Resident Gabriel Sena told the outlet, “It’s gonna be sad for them, you know, because some people don’t have cars, and this is where they go, and all they have is Smith’s now down on Yale, but that might be out of the way too.”