Vallejo police propose not responding to home and business alarms

Vallejo police are holding a community town hall Tuesday night to discuss a proposed plan that would end police response to most alarms.

Police said they spend more than 115 hours every month responding to home and business alarms and the majority end up being false. In 2022, 98% of calls were false alarms, VPD said.

"We have to look at how we can prioritize to provide the best public safety that we can and this is part of that strategy," Deputy Chief Joseph Gomez said. "It is an area we can cut to provide better public service to be out there for the shootings, the stolen cars, the disturbances with violence here." 

Records show over the past three years, Vallejo Police responded to more than 10,509 alarm calls for service. Only 200 resulted in a criminal case or report being filed, and just 30 arrests were made.

The new proposal would dispatch officers only for verified alarms, meaning those where there is confirmation a crime is in progress. Unverified alarms would not get a police response.

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"We need to clear ourselves up," Gomez said. "Until we can get our staffing back up to what it was years ago."

With 34 officers and nine supervisors patrolling the entire city, the department is understaffed. Vallejo recently passed a local emergency over the city's police shortage.

Brazen burglars have hit Tony's Cakes at least six times over the last six months but owner Tony Diaz said no suspects have been caught.

"We had to upgrade our security system and put metal grates on the windows," he said. "We pretty much just make reports for insurance purposes now. Not so much to have it investigated."

Currently, Vallejo Police said alarm calls require two to four officers and on average take 10 minutes for officers to arrive and 15 more minutes to clear the call.

Under the proposed change, dispatchers would just log unverified alarm calls and offer an incident number.

"It would be nothing new to me," Diaz said. "It's always been like that."

The department will take public input about the proposal Tuesday night at City Hall.

Brooks Jarosz is an investigative reporter for KTVU. Email him at and follow him on Facebook and X @BrooksKTVU