GILBERT (3TV/CBS 5) -- Merilyn Lashley lives in a quiet, gated community in Gilbert.

"I do feel safe here. I do," Lashley told 3 On Your Side as she was walking her dog.

Lashley dog

But that wasn't necessarily the case when she lived in a home in Sacramento. In fact, while she lived there, she paid a company called Action Security of Sacramento a monthly fee to monitor her home just in case of a break-in.

"You know, things happen. I'm not a spring chicken anymore,” Lashley said with a laugh. “So, I felt more comfortable with a little extra protection."

But Lashley recently sold her Sacramento home and moved to Gilbert to be closer to her grown children. She's actually still unpacking.

Because she was moving, Lashley canceled her service with Action Security of Sacramento. After all, the company didn't provide service here in Arizona.

Action Security of Sacramento

She says the company, using a holding company that purchased the debt, sent her a final notice for $880 anyway in order for her to pay out the remainder of that contract.

"And, I said, 'But, you don't provide service to the area where I'm moving to.' And they said, 'Well, you signed a contract so, you owe that money,'" she recalled

Unsatisfied, Lashley says she continued to complain.

"I said, that can't be right. That's not right  and she said, 'Let me tell you what I'll do. I'll cut it in half so you only owe $440,'” Lashley remembers the representative telling her.

Lashley says she was grateful the bill was cut in half, but she still didn't agree with having to pay for a service that's not offered here.

So, she contacted 3 On Your Side.

"And, I thought 'Gee, I wonder if he [Gary Harper] can help me.' So, I sent you an email," she said.

3 On Your Side contacted Action Security of Sacramento, which has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.

Action Security of Sacramento

We also reached out to the holding company that purchased Lashley’s debt.

They looked into the matter for us and claimed the remaining $440 bill was to help pay for the expensive security equipment that was left at Lashley’s Sacramento home when she moved.

Gary Lashley

The company said it was a financial loss to them. However, at our request, they agreed to dismiss the $440 bill.

Lashley says it only happened with the help of 3 On Your Side.

“You have a big smile on your face. What's the latest?" I asked her.

“Well, I'm very relieved," she answered. "Action Security agreed to give me a zero balance, and I don't owe them any money. So, I'm very grateful."

Gary Harper's 3 On Your Side reports air weeknights on 3TV News at 9.


Copyright 2018 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.



3 On Your Side' Investigative Reporter

Recommended for you

(4) comments


From an article in Time (magazine): " From top to bottom, the BBB is funded by the annual dues paid by businesses it anoints with “accreditation,” which allows the companies to put those iconic BBB stamps of approval on their storefronts and websites. This fact raises obvious questions about an inherent conflict of interest: The organization’s customers are businesses, not taxpayers or consumers. How can the BBB serve as an honest broker between businesses and consumers when it is fully funded by one of these parties? Many argue that it cannot — that there’s a natural incentive to paint its paying clients in the best possible light."


I always get a kick out of the BBB ratings. They used to mean something, but now it depends on where you live because they're essentially franchises with different levels of ethics. In the Phoenix area, you can have an F rating, then pay to become a member and, presto! it's now A+.

I found this out when I got ripped off by one of their members. I had documentation. They just asked the (big, well-known) flooring company to send them a letter. Then they closed the case. In other cases I've seen auto repair shops and HVAC contractors have their rating improve from F to A+ overnight when they became members. Who's holding the BBB accountable? The Chamber of Commerce.




She entered into a CONTRACT!! Put her in debtor's prison! Obey the law, granny!

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.