Judge rules against verified response injunction

Sunday, June 1, 2003

LOS ANGELES - Alarm dealers here were unsuccessful in their attempt in court to block a new verified response policy that requires burglar alarms be visually verified before city police are dispatched to the scene.

In his initial written decision, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge David A. Jaffe on May 8 denied the Greater Los Angeles Security Alarm Association’s request for an injunction to block the policy. Jaffe found that the policy did not violate the city’s alarm ordinance that GLASSA said required police to respond to alarms and that the police were not obligated to notify Neighborhood Councils of the verified response policy.

At press time, GLASSA was waiting for the judge’s final ruling to be delivered within 10 to 20 days of the trial, at which time the group planned to file its appeal.

“What the court has done gives us a good indication of where they are going, which is subject to change, but it doesn’t often change,” said Jerry Lenander, executive director of GLASSA.

The preliminary decision now leaves the door open for Los Angeles Police to implement the policy, which could happen as soon as July 1.

The Los Angeles Police Commission was expected to review the court’s decision in a meeting in early May.

The commission was also expected to review a report prepared by the City of Los Angeles Burglar Alarm Task Force, a 19-member group impaneled by the city council to study the city’s problem of false alarms. The commission has not yet put that item on their agenda for a vote, Lenander said. Among the recommendations from the task force was to accept a false alarm proposal that would give alarm owners here three false alarms before police would not respond.

In mid-April, in a unanimous vote, members of the Public Safety Committee and the Education and Neighborhood Committee accepted a 45-page report prepared by a task force.

Representatives from Los Angeles did not return calls for comment by press time.