Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Home Studio Security

Hi Connie; I mentioned in my last message that dealing with a crime
risk is not at all complicated;however,it is involved. There many
options for the property owner,but not everyone can afford some of
them. There are also those that will disagree with the concepts that
I will share with you. These concepts are not mine;however, because
of the years that I was involved in this area of law enforcement and
seeing and experiencing what I have,I totally agree with them.They
were conceived and formulated by people on an international level
over a period of 45-50 years ( the concept of crime risk management
actually began in the United Kingdom in the mid 1950’s). Many of the
concepts or ideas are simple as in the case of residential
security,others are more complicated as in commercial or industrial
situations. This subject matter fills many text books so it’s obvious
that I won’t be able to cover anywhere near everything. First I would
present what is referred to as the methods of dealing with a crime
risk. #1 is risk elimination, whenever a risk is identified,a genuine
attempt should be made to eliminate it. #2 is risk reduction, when a
risk cannot be eliminated ,an effort to reduce the risk to it’s
lowest level should be made. #3 is risk spreading,this involves
reducing potential targets to smaller segments,making a large loss
unlikely.#4 is risk transfer, a good example is insurance. Another is
to use outside suppliers of goods and services rather than in
house;however, this probably isn’t as applicable in a home studio
situation. #5 is the least desirable,risk acceptance;however,many of
us are faced with having to do this in some situations for various
reasons such as finances or even just not wanting to do something
because it opposes our chosen life style,and thats ok. Second,I would
present what is referred to as the Three Lines of Defense. #1 is the
property line #2 is the structures exterior walls,including but not
limited to the windows,doors,skylights,roof ventilators,etc. #3 is
the interior. At each of these,there are two types of barriers that
should be incorporated. #1 physical barriers #2 psychological
barriers. Throughout these three lines of defense one should
exercise what is referred to as proceedural controls. Now, going back
to the first line of defense,the property line, a good example of a
physical barrier could be a fence with the gates chained and
padlocked with a high security chain and padlock that cannot be cut
with bolt cutters. Also, the padlock should be of solid steel or
brass,with both toe and heel of the shackle ball bearing locking and
the keyway of the ace key type not the bitted key type.This limits
the size and weight of what the thief wants to take and puts that
nagging doubt in his mind that in an escape attempt,the secured fence
will slow him down.In each of these three lines of defense,there are
many options and I won’t try to cover them all but simply give an
example so you will get the basic idea.An example of a psychological
barrier at the first line of defense could be lighting.It is highly
recommended that for security lighting,nothing is better than high
pressure sodium.It gives off more lumens of light for the dollar cost
of operation than incandescent,mercury vapor or quartz.The lighting
when used from dusk till dawn as recommended says to the
intruder,don’t trespass or try anything,you’ll be seen.I might also
mention at this point the concept of “open line of sight”. Trim all
landscaping and arrange your property so that it gives a full view of
your property to your neighbors.If your property gives a great deal
of privacy to you,it also gives it to the criminal,and thats what
he’s looking for.In an enclosed yard,dogs can be a psychological
barrier,an alarm system so to speak. Don’t ever consider or rely on
them as a physical barrrier.Over the years I have worked quite a few
burglaries where the dogs were put down with poisoned meat. One comes
to mind where two dobermans and a german shepherd were put down in a
back yard with poisoned meat so that entry was gained through the
back door.The procedural control spoken of earlier,would be the
resecuring of the gate after use.This might be a good place to
mention that in many instances “natural” physical barriers can be a
good choice. An example would be that if a fence were not a choice
for some reason,one could plant large leaf holly(you know the sticky
kind) close together and allow it to grow to chest height. In my part
of the country, I have even seen people plant large running beds of
cactus to prevent someone from climbing over a fence.Another choice
might be pyrocanthia(spelling?) Don’t sell a criminal short,when he
sees these things,he evaluates them for resistance and risks to
himself.There are many many more examples of physical and
psychological barriers at the first line of defense,but for the sake
of time and space,these should give you a general idea.Before going
on to the second line of defense,I would like to touch on the issue
of guns and the use of deadly force.I firmly believe that not every
home should have weapons in them,and for a multitude of
reasons;however,I would fight the devil himself for a citizens right
to own and keep a weapon for self defense(when within the law) and
I’m not even a member of the NRA. In the 27 years that I was a Texas
peace officer,I saw more people killed or injured with their own
weapons than criminals. In fact, during those years I only saw two
cases where a criminal was stopped by the use of deadly force by a
home owner. Too often,the use of deadly force is a permanent solution
to a temporary problem,that could have been addressed in another
way.This is one of the major reasons that crime risk management
through strengthening of ones property is so important. The need for
the use of deadly force is eliminated or greatly reduced. If anyone
is determined to keep a weapon at home,please at least take a very
good course in weaponry,get to know your weapon and how to safely
handle it,take every precaution to protect children at home, and get
a copy of your states laws on the use of deadly force to protect life
and property(in most states the requirements for use of deadly force
to protect property is different than to protect life or physical
well being against serious bodily injury). It would be sad enough to
to be a victim of some criminal without becoming a victim of bad
judgment and being called to answer to the law. I hope this doesn’t
sound like preaching, it’s just that in those 27 years,I saw a lot of
unnecessary suffering. I believe I probably have given you more than
you asked for, at least for the first go round.More later if you
wish. Best wishes to all, respectfully, John Barton