Greensboro Police Chief Brian James presented a plan at the annual City Council retreat on Thursday, March 24, to free up a tremendous amount of time for Greensboro police officers.
The plan is for the Greensboro Police Department (GPD) to stop responding to burglar alarm calls unless the company confirms that it is not a false alarm.
James keeps talking about doing more with less and he said this policy would free up a tremendous amount of time for patrol officers so they could be out doing real police work.
The data James presented is convincing. In 2019, police responded to 13,427 burglar alarm calls and, of those, 0.7 percent, or 104, were actual burglaries. In 2020, GPD responded to 10,978 alarm calls and 1.3 percent, or 153, were actual burglaries.
Out of those 10,978 calls in 2020, a total of five suspects were arrested and three of those were at schools. Under the new policy, the GPD would continue to respond to alarm calls from schools and also respond to calls from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. James said that of the few calls that do turn out not to be false alarms, almost all are between 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
James said that the alarm companies would be notified that they need to register their clients with the city in April with the effective date for implementation of the program in June.
He said that since video has become a part of alarm systems, it should not be difficult for the companies to determine if it is a real or a false alarm.
James noted an additional benefit to crime reduction in not responding to the thousands of false alarms. He said that the people who live in high crime areas tend to not have alarms, which means responding to a burglar alarm call usually meant having an officer travel to a low crime area. James said that on average it took an officer 30 to 45 minutes to clear a false alarm call.
James said, “I think it will improve our response times. It’s almost like a force multiplier.”
Idea- provide the police department with the money, you the council so freely gives to fellow council and county commissioner for their “profit” with our tax dollars. Hire more police and watch the crime rate reduce once you untied the chiefs hands so he and only he can run the department! Council needs to wake up! Elections are soon!
They cannot “hire” more police. No one wants to work there. Hey John, when you are sitting in the balcony of the city council ask the chief or mayor how many people they started the current police academy with and how many are left.
I know you read this Nancy and the rest of council. You and the incompetent leadership at GPD are the reason they cannot fill an academy. Lower pay, no cars, top heavy administration, patrol left with all the vacancies. Now they won’t answer alarm calls due for the waste of time in “low crime areas.” You know, where the people that pay the taxes that you so freely give away to non profits with sitting city council members. Wait until Zack is back on council. Then he can self deal again.
Still waiting to hear a plan for the police department from one of the mayoral candidates. Put it in writing on the table Nancy and Justin. I know Eric Robert will because he’s not scared to state an actual opinion. You wouldn’t believe how many people I know who are going to vote for him.
Answer to your academy question:
They need/want 40 people in each of their two academies per year. More importantly, they need all 40 to graduate and remain employed from each class to close the vacancy gap. Chief said that in an article somewhere.
The class that just graduated started with 40 but ended with only 28. They are now in field training and will lose a couple more before that is over.
The most recent class, which just began, started with 18 or 19. One month in they have 15 left….FIFTEEN! Are you kidding me?!? They have at least three months to go before field training, so I would guess maybe 10 of those make it all the way. Even if they all make it, 15 people isn’t going to help anyone. GPD has already lost 15 people this year due to retirement, termination, resignation.
You have to graduate more people than you lose over the time period that the cadets are in class or you are not gaining anything. On the other hand, you also need to stop hiring people at the bottom of the barrel who cannot pass a test week one. How much money are you throwing away just to be able to say that you got your starting numbers up, when they fail out immediately? Come on. You are not fooling anyone GPD.
Or just stay the course Council and Chief and keep pretending that all is well. Keep saying that you are doing more with less, Chief, and the Council will just say “OK, keep doing that. We are going to focus our spending elsewhere.” You need to publicly demand more funding for the police before we fall hopelessly behind. Maybe instead of rolling over so they can pat your belly for “doing more with less”, you should call the council out for their foolishness and speak the truth. You aren’t doing more with less. You are doing less with less. They can’t hurt you big guy.
I also enjoyed your Fox 8 article that was supposed to talk about your crime reduction plan. No where in that article was there any mention of your plan. It just talked about crime trends. I doubt you even have a plan because I have not seen anything changing at GPD, at least not publicly. Vacancies certainly are not shrinking. If you want public support of this plan, if you are going to release an article touting your grand plan, how about cluing us in on that plan at least a little bit?
Mandate Mayor and chief want to leave folks high and dry during burglaries so they can enforce who is drink from the right cup on the right side of the street for the permitted areas and removing homeless folks from public areas near the 100 million dollar Performance Arts Palace. Our elite have security but the nondonor class is going to need a few more Coliseum gin shows to be able to defend their life and property when they know GPD won’t respond to an alarm at 9:49 pm. Can our elected officials please focus on public safety and internal infrastructure instead of throwing money to developers and giant Monuments to largesse like the Tanger entanglement.
Cities have been doing this for years, and without any caveats. So now we will only waste officers’ time for half of the day instead of the whole day? Come on Chief. This is a decent half step forward, but how about taking the whole step. GPD should only respond to verified burglar alarms 24/7. Panic and Robbery alarms can still be answered normally since they involve more risk to life.
While you are at it, let’s go ahead and announce that GPD will no longer respond to barking dogs, squealing tire calls, or any other non criminal call for service. Let police get back to doing police work. You can start adding that nonsense back in once GPD refills their numbers if you really want to.
None of that will happen though. Instead, go ahead and settle in everyone for another half measured GPD program.
these doorbell cameras – all cameras – seem to be useful to many. consider law enforcement training, criminal justice & active roles in ‘cat herding’ for students in psychology, sociology, poly sci, team sports, anthropology, military studies etc.. refereeing team sports should be considered ‘law enforcement’. bartenders? clergy? expert cat herders ! mothers