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SentriForce Releases AI-Powered Solution to Parking Lot Smash-and-Grabs

SentriForce Releases AI-Powered Solution to Parking Lot Smash-and-Grabs

LotWitness Helps Customers Protect Themselves from Theft Without Wasting Parking Space

Video surveillance leader SentriForce is taking steps to make parking lots safer for customers and employees. The company released LotWitness, an AI-powered safety system that helps visitors protect themselves from theft in retail parking lots.

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LotWitness uses flashing red and blue lights, customizable, AI-powered safety announcements and prominently placed signage to remind customers to remove or hide valuables before leaving their cars.

The goal is to equip owners and property managers of shopping centers, restaurants and bars with a cost-effective strategy for deterring crime, SentriForce CEO Chris Peschang said.

“LotWitness’ safety features not only remind customers to secure or remove their valuables, but discourage criminals from entering properties in the first place,” he explained. “We are excited to introduce this solution to the Texas market.”

Unlike other surveillance products that take up multiple parking spaces, LotWitness is installed on light poles and powered by the existing electrical infrastructure. Its limited footprint allows additional room for customers.

“Parking spots are gold to retail centers,” Peschang said. “LotWitness allows us to help property managers deter crime without taking up a bunch of valuable space.”

SentriForce has provided full-service, managed security solutions to the construction, municipal infrastructure and single- and multi-family residential markets since 2004.

The first LotWitness prototype came in response to a request from a Houston-area restauranteur who saw flashing lights on a SentriForce surveillance device located on a construction site. SentriForce agreed to install something similar in the restaurant parking lot — with the p****** of a no-cost r****** if the business saw no decline in break-ins.

Installation came shortly before the Houston Astros’ playoff season, when the restaurant historically saw an uptick in crime. With zero reported car break-ins that season, SentriForce knew it was on to something.

“And that was before we added audible reminders,” Peschang said. “That was just the deterrence of a box with lights on it.”

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Early successes propelled the idea forward, encouraging the SentriForce team to develop additional features, such as high-definition video recording. A beta version of LotWitness is installed at FM Kitchen and Tenfold Coffee in Houston, among other local establishments. LotWitness customers receive 24/7 service and support — including video evidence retrieval — as part of their low-commitment monthly rental contracts.

Although the product’s market-ready version is currently only available in the southeast region of the U.S., Peschang said SentriForce plans to expand its presence nationwide.

“Break-ins happen everywhere, and we’re ready to do something about that,” he said. “With LotWitness, we’re creating safer environments for customers and helping to protect property owners’ and managers’ investments. Everyone wins.”

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