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Officer’s decoy police car business helps deter crime

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Jan. 15, 2015)-- A reserve officer who runs a security business has come up with a new, less expensive way to help businesses in his community deter crime.

Kevin Conjelko is a reserve officer for the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department. Like a lot of people who wear a badge, he works off-duty security jobs on the side.

He found that was expensive for businesses and many could only afford to hire an off-duty officer for parts of the day.

"It’s very expensive to have a police officer there 24/7,” said Conjelko.

That’s how he came up with the idea to use decoy police cars. He buys old police cruisers at auctions and then leaves them out in front of businesses to scare off potential robbers. It is a lot cheaper for the business, but still provides similar results.

“You put a squad car in front of a building and your average honest citizen doesn’t even give it a second thought. But a bad guy looks at it and thinks, 'Well is there a cop in the back? Is there a cop on break?'”

Conjelko started two years ago when he bought his first old cruiser at an auction. Now he has a fleet of five cars and business is booming.

“I’ve actually had sites, some constructions sites that were getting hit pretty frequently. Once my cars were utilized… (with) the variety of security measures that were available, (I) had zero incidents.”

Before anyone thinks they’ve got his security plan figured out, Conjelko said the decoy is almost never alone. In fact, it’s merely an extra tool he uses to provide security.

“You always want to have a blend of security,” he explained. “We have a variety of remote viewing devices, motion sensors, roving patrols that even if the cars aren’t manned, there's still somebody keeping an eye on the business.”

Conjelko tries to stay out of the Johnson County Sheriff’s jurisdiction and sticks to his Indianapolis neighborhood.

He said he just wants to do what he can to help keep criminals at bay.

"To me that’s what law enforcement is all about… If they know we`re chasing them, that’s good."

If you’d like to learn more about Conjelko’s business, email him at jkonjelko@sbcglobal.net