Sonitrol system catches thieves hiding in rafters

Saturday, December 1, 2007

HOUSTON--A Sonitrol alarm system helped police locate two men, of five who had broken into a car stereo and electronics store here Oct. 12, hiding in the rafters of the store.
When the five men broke into Cartek Auto Store at 2:30 a.m., they unknowingly tripped the store's silent alarm system. When Sonitrol operators heard the men talking, they confirmed the intrusion and notified the police department. "They were taking their time because they had no idea they had set off the silent alarm," said Tim Hickey, marketing communications manager at Sonitrol.
When the police arrived, three of the men ran from the scene and were later apprehended, according to a news report. However, two of the men remained inside the building and attempted to hide from police, unaware that Sonitrol operators were still listening. "The Sonitrol operator was still hearing noises in the storage area, so we knew there were more in the building. The police called in the K-9 units who located the other two thieves in the rafters," said Hickey.
Muhammad Yousaf, owner of Cartek Auto Store, said the Sonitrol security system had been installed for about two years and the store had never been broken into. He estimated that the thieves caused about $8,000 in damages to the store and equipment, but said the loss could've been much greater had the thieves gotten away, probably around $20,000.
When Sonitrol contacted Yousaf, the police had already apprehended the men. "Sonitrol called us at home after they called the cops and by the time they told us, the cops had already caught the people," he said.