FALSE ALARMS: Fines For Regular Burglar Callouts

Workers cook, clean, and cut items to add to the auto and truck salvage lot. It’s the legal version of a chop shop.

While the business is legal, Sam’s Riverside Incorporated general manager says a lot of illegal activities happen on the company’s lot. Scott Frank says, “Well I mean we work hard to produce our inventory, and when we send somebody out to get a part and somebody sees that they’re damaged they’re missing because somebody stole it. It’s really hard on us.”

Frank says they started with locks keeping honest people out. When that wasn’t enough they put up an electric fence. But the real solution came when they subscribed to a security system… until they were fined for a false alarm. “Well it’s discouraging,”Frank says.

Discouraging for him and police. 90 percent of the alarms police respond to in the metro area turn out to be nothing.

Dispatch supervisor Brad Button says, “Sometimes there are mechanical problems. Sometimes the owners forget the code there’s various reasons in which it could happen.”

Which is why they started fining people for these false alarms, but Frank says not all these alarms are false.

He says burglars in the area that have been caught in the past use police scanners so they know when police are on their way. Frank says, “The thieves hear that on their scanner and leave before the police every get there.”

But even with the extra expense of tickets frank says he’d rather have a few extra false alarms, than an alarm that doesn’t go off when you need it most.

Filed in: News

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