ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A judge presiding over federally-mandated reforms of the Albuquerque police force is taking the city to task for trying to disqualify an independent monitor.

U.S. District Judge Robert Brack Thursday denied a motion Thursday in which the city questioned monitor James Ginger's objectivity.

The motion cited comments Ginger made in 2016 that were caught on a police body camera and a remark from his staff that he "has an ax to grind."

Brack says neither was evidence of bias.

The judge also chastised the decision to secretly record Ginger with a body camera as "unacceptable."

He ordered recordings and transcripts secretly obtained of the monitor and his team be turned over.

The department has been undergoing an overhaul since the Justice Department found a pattern of excessive force in 2014.