Los Angeles Police Panel Reconsidering Total Verified Response


The Los Angeles Police Commission is reconsidering the possibility of total alarm verification for the second-largest city in the nation. Commission member Rick Caruso says the alarm industry hasn’t been forthcoming enough on providing a list of its subscribers and wants the commission to reconsider a verified response policy for all alarms in Los Angeles.

Under such a policy, designed to deal with excessive false alarms, Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) officers would no longer respond to burglar alarms unless they were verified by someone at the location or through remote electronic visual inspection.

The commission, which oversees the LAPD, had asked the Greater Los Angeles Security Alarm Association (GLASAA) in January to have its members provide lists of its customers to help confirm alarm permit fulfillment. Lt. Debra Kirk, a member of the commission’s staff, reported at the panel’s March 16 meeting that 20 percent of GLASAA members had yet to provide such a list, according to the commission’s press representative Tamryn Catania.

As the commission continued discussion of GLASAA list compliance to its next meeting on April 6, Caruso requested that an item be placed on the April 6 agenda for the consideration of reopening discussion of a verified response policy for the LAPD.

“It’s worded in such a way that they can reopen it if they wish,” Catania told Security Sales & Integration.

Los Angeles has been debating verified response for nearly two years – the commission first put consideration of verified response on its agenda on April 9, 2002. The Los Angeles City Council intervened and delayed any LAPD implementation until the issue was reviewed by a city task force, which recommended a policy where verified response would only kick in after a third false alarm in a calendar year.

A compromise policy proposed by Mayor Jim Hahn was approved by the commission last July, which had police no longer responding to unverified alarms at addresses with more than two false alarms. After additional action by the city council delayed its implementation, the policy went into effect on Jan. 1 pending consideration of a new alarm ordinance by the council.

Councilwoman Janice Hahn, sister of the mayor, revealed at a GLASAA meeting Feb. 17 that the council’s draft proposal includes a $115 fee for the first false alarm. It is unclear how any commission action would affect the council debate, or whether the council would move to veto any commission action. Eric Moody, an aide to Janice Hahn, said Tuesday he and the councilwoman had not yet reviewed Caruso’s action. A secretary for GLASAA President Mark Sepulveda said he was also reviewing the action.

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