301.519.9237 exdirector@nesaus.org

11.22.19- Enquirer – 

It was somewhere around midnight on Oct. 27 that Jim Delp first heard the alarm going off.

It was a security alarm. And he couldn’t turn it off because it wasn’t his.

The alarm was at the Lowe’s Home Improvement store on Colerain Avenue, which is near his home on Dry Ridge Road in Colerain Township. 

It was loud, even with the windows closed. And it stayed loud, ringing until 5 or 6 a.m., he said, when employees came back to the store.

And at midnight that next day, it happened again. And the next night. And the next.

Delp said he went to the store to speak with a manager, who told him the alarm belonged to the security company Lowe’s contracts with and there was nothing Lowe’s could do to stop it from going off. Delp said the manager would not give him the name of the security company. 

So every night, Delp and his wife and his neighbors found their sleep disturbed by the alarm. Delp said when it became obvious the management at Lowe’s was not going to fix the issue, he began calling 911 to report the alarm going off. And the alarm kept going off at midnight.

Delp thought a nudge might help Lowe’s address the issue. So on Nov. 16, he donned three pairs of pajamas, slippers and a nightcap and stood out at the corner in front of the store with a sign informing passing motorists of the malfunctioning alarm and the message, “Please help me get some sleep.”

On Nov. 17, he donned a business suit and went back out to the corner to let his placard plead his case. Andy Sparks, a passing neighbor stopped, snapped a photo and posted Delp and his plight on Facebook. It was shared more than 100 times.

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Delp also went to Colerain Township police and zoning officials to see if he could get help. Police Chief Mark Denney said officers went to Lowe’s as soon as the department was made aware of the issue.

“We sent an officer there and spoke to the manager who said they would fix it,” Denney said. 

And eventually, Lowe’s did. Midnight came on Nov. 17 accompanied by silence. 

Delp said he had the best sleep he’s had in weeks.

Lowe’s was contacted by The Enquirer and a representative said they were sorry the incident occurred and someone would look into the issue and get back to a reporter. 

Colerain Township is working on a policy and procedure to fine businesses for false alarms, but the program is not operational yet.

“I would encourage residents to call us” in a situation such as this, Denney said. “We are happy to work for them. That’s what they pay us to do.”

This story may be updated.