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155 S. Seward St.
Juneau, AK 99801

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Q. In regards to noise disturbances: I have a neighbor who frequently plays very loud music outside of his garage while working on his truck after 10pm. I know that I am not the only person in the neighborhood who is agitated with this disturbance. My question is this: Who would we contact to get them to be quiet? I don't feel comfortable calling 9-1-1 for a non-emergency, but my family can not sleep!

Dear Juneau Resident,

That is such a bummer to have music, or any other noise, keeping you and your family awake! JPD folks have done years of shift work and sympathize. The most direct person to contact about the issue is the person making the noise. I know there is a tendency to avoid talking to neighbors about negative issues because no one wants to have the difficult conversations. Defaulting to police interaction, in JPD’s experience, is a recipe for a feud because the person being addressed becomes immediately defensive and often embarrassed, like most of us feel when corrected.

Try talking to the person when you are not mad and when the situation is not happening. Introduce yourself, shake hands, and chat for a few minutes. That kind of interaction can go a long way. Remember that noise carries a lot further at night so if you go into the conversation with the assumption the person doesn’t know the problem he is creating, you stand the best chance of letting him save face and fix the problem.

If the person doesn’t respond to such a reasonable appeal, it would be a logical step to call JPD and ask for officers to respond. I appreciate you hesitating to use 9-1-1 since that number is not appropriate for this type of issue. You can call 586-0600 instead and dispatchers will answer. Be prepared to be put on hold as other calls are screened for emergencies and 9-1-1 calls are answered. Your complaint will be put in a queue for officers to respond if there are no priority calls.

A disturbing the peace citation is an infraction with a big fine, $300. The CBJ ordinance is 42.20.095.


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