Security Companies See Increase in Calls for Service

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - "They just kicked the door real hard," said Jim Hurst about the people who broke into his East Montgomery home last month.

Hurst's first call was to the police, his second to a security company to install an alarm system. After a rash of burglaries in the neighborhood where thieves have hit some homes more than once, Hurst wasn't taking any chances. He says he got an alarm system, "immediately."

Silent Sentry's Dana Temple says the number of calls from potential customers is up. Most are homeowners, just like Hurst, who want their home and property protected. "In the last three weeks, we've done five or six installations at homes that home been broken into. That's a lot," Temple tells WSFA 12 News.

So, what's behind the increase? You'd have to ask the burglars. But there's some speculation that the economy may play a role. "The security industry is tied to perceived needs," says Temple.

Temple says a home security system isn't as expensive as it used to be and installation is not complicated. Whether it's with his company or another, he says it's better to be safe than sorry. He says, "Folks end up losing family heirlooms."

For Hurst, he already says it's money well spent just for the peace of mind. "If I had an alarm, it would have scared them off," he said.

It's a matter of risk and reward. Thieves look for the biggest reward with the least risk of getting caught. Alarms increase that risk and most burglars won't take that chance.

Local police report a slight increase in burglaries, but discount the theory that the economy is a factor. They say most burglars are repeat offenders break in homes regardless of what's happening on Wall Street.