SEATTLE - When burglars smashed their way into Don Eduardo's Mexican Restaurant on Eastlake Avenue in Seattle last month, they had no idea everything they did and said was being picked up by microphones.
The burglary was being monitored by technicians at Sonitrol Verified Electronic Security in Everett.
According to restaurant owner Eduardo Alvarado, the burglars were after his high-end tequila and vodka.
Seattle police were alerted by Sonitrol’s dispatchers and officers caught one burglar.
But on the audio surveillance, there were clearly two separate voices.
Police searched the entire building, but couldn’t find another suspect, so they left.
Two hours later, at Sonitrol’s verification center, the dispatchers heard more sounds coming from inside the restaurant.
Police responded again.
“He was hiding out and came up through that crawl space,” said Sonitrol Vice President Jim Payne.
The second suspect was also arrested.
Sonitrol has made a name for itself since the company opened in Everett in 1978.
Monitoring thousands of client's security systems, dispatchers from Sonitrol have helped police arrest more than 140 criminals in 2013.
The unique "audio verification system" has set Sonitrol apart from its competitors.
"Rather than sending the police department on a wild goose chase,” Payne said, “we confirm that the crime is in progress and get them on a real situation where they can catch criminals in the act."
Sonitrol security systems are primarily used by businesses and school districts.
They average 200 arrests a year from Whatcom County all the way down to the Portland area.