Ohio PD to Stop Responding to Most Security Alarms

Akron police soon will no longer respond to security alarms until someone verifies that help is needed.

Helping the city with the transition is Jeff Sutherland, who owns a security system provider in the Las Vegas area, where verified response policies went into effect in the mid-1990s.

Sutherland has been retained as a consultant to Akron. He said cities that have implemented similar response policies have not seen an uptick in burglaries or break-ins.

What Akron can expect, however, is some "push back" from some residents and counter-claims by some security system providers that will see their business model affected by new monitoring and verification requirements.

Sutherland said Akron should expect some groups to charge, as they did in Los Angeles and elsewhere, that the response policy will only trigger higher burglary rates as criminals will know police are not racing to the scene.

Others will argue that the change hasn't affected crime rates at all in other cities with similar policies.

In the end, Sutherland said, the rate of false alarms in Akron is similar to those across the country. And like Akron, he said, police agencies have struggled for decades to resolve the issue of false alarms.

"In 50 years, we haven't gotten the alarm rate down," he said.

Copyright 2013 - The Akron Beacon Journal

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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