COMMENT ON DOES CS HAVE INDEMNITY FOR CRIMINAL PROSECUTION FROM SEPTEMBER 16, 2015 ARTICLE
In response to the latest post from Det. Robinson of Phoenix PD [Sept 16 2015], any Central Station who calls for a response to "non emergency administrative" type signals deserves to be treated with the same level of disrespect that is held by the central station that made the call.
USA routinely challenges municipal laws based largely on your reply to Detective Robinson comments, (nexus, interstate commerce, etc). However we are always in full compliance with signal handling procedures as created and defined by local code which rightfully has standing in this area.
This creates an interesting issue for police, fire and other first responder departments. If they have a mechanisim for registering and requiring a fee, as well as operating instructions and requirements for those calling in for assistance, is it enough that a central station, not located within the licensing agency's jurisdiction, complies with the operational requirements but refuses to submit to the registration and pay the fees? Certainly no municipality needs more laws on its books that it can't or won't enforce. Some legal issues, including constitutional and federal laws regarding interstate commerce, make a compelling case for challenging these laws. After all, a PD could hardly make it illegal for a member of the public calling 911 to report an alarm condition. Why target a central station?
Alarm registration is common in many jurisdictions. First responders want the alarm information as soon as possible, including subscriber identification and as much information as their systems may contain regarding information that first responders may want to know when responding to emergency situations. But alarm registration is almost universally an obligation imposed on the end user, not the alarm dealer or central station.
The role of central station and its relationship with first responders may be changing with evolution of technology. The recently announced and promoted ASAP to PSAP Program by CSAA is an example. According to CSAA's website, "The Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP) is a national program that is the next generation for the processing of information from alarm monitoring stations needing emergency dispatch."
CSAA describes ASAP as " The Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP) program is a computer-aided dispatch system designed by the Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA) and the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO Int’l)."
If central stations are going to have direct communication with first responders, not available to the public at large, then they are going to have to adhere to the rules, and that may require registration and fees, as well as submitting to the jurisdiction of that first responder.
To reiterate the response to the original question, the contractual indemnity provision will not insulate the dealer or central station from criminal prosecution or criminal fines for the dealer's or central station's own violation of criminal law.
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