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Communities consider cracking down on false alarms

Communities consider cracking down on false alarms



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Two cities are interested in cracking down on false alarms at homes and businesses.

Draper and Cottonwood Heights are considering delaying police response to alarms until the company sends out its private guards first. They say police are wasting time on false alarms.

But Utah Alarm Association President Bill LaRochelle says they ought to work together on stopping false alarms and catching criminals in real alarms.

"Joint action between police and the alarm companies is a lot more effective than either one of them trying to snipe at each other," he said.

LaRochelle says an ordinance requiring installation and upkeep of particular equipment and a graduated fine structure for false alarms would be more effective.

He says that would require people with continual false alarms to get their systems fixed. He says Sandy, South Jordan and West Jordan have similar ordinances.

LaRochelle says a delayed response to a burglar alarm would mean criminals would get away.

"The biggest problem I have with it is not having an armed and trained person respond to the alarm. Most private security guards companies are using are not armed," he said.

But a video presentation to Draper's City Council says burglar alarms are false 98 percent of the time.

Draper and Cottonwood Heights officials say when police respond to false alarms, it significantly slows their response times for real crimes and more criminals get away.

E-mail: mrichards@ksl.com

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Mary Richards

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