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gomer
March 22, 2006, 11:09 AM
The following happened this past Fall and I thought I'd get everyones input on the situation. Sorry if it is a long read.

I work 4 10 hour days, so I'm off every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I always get up around 8:30am on Fridays to eat breakfast with and see my wife off to work when she leaves at 9:40. I live in a fairly nice residential neighborhood that has extremely low crime. So I'm not continually "on the lookout" for trouble... but this particular Friday morning I notice a strange car in the neighborhood that keeps going around my block. At about 9:20am the car backs into my neighbor's (directly across the road from my house) driveway, the driver gets out.. raises the trunk, walks up to the front door and proceeds to kick it open in one swift kick! I'm utterly speechless at what I've just witnessed. I run to the bedroom where my wife is getting ready for work and tell her to call 911, that someone has just broke into Janet's house (single mother of two boys 5 and 8). I knew she wasn't home at the time, she leaves early to take the boys to school/daycare and then to work.

Knowing the response time of the local PD is fairly long and this appeared to be a guy that was in a big hurry to "grab and dash" I decided that I was going to stop him and hold him for the police. I pulled on some jeans and shoes really quickly, grabbed my Springfield 1911, stuck it in the small of my back and went back to my front door. The guy was on his way from the rear of his car, going back into the house again. I waited until he was back in the house and ran thru my front yard, across the road and stopped behind a large tree in Janet's front yard. The tree is about 20ft from the sidewalk out into the yard and almost half way between the front door and the driveway where the car is parked. I'll admit I was terrified and starting to second guess my idea. At this time the guy walks out of the house with a microwave, right down the sidewalk past where I'm behind the tree and starts towards his car. When he is about 15 feet past the tree, I walk out from behind it and say "Hey There, what's going on??!!" The guy spins to face me (still holding the microwave) and has a very surprised look on his face. I have not drawn my weapon at this point. I tell him to set the microwave down and to sit down beside it, I have called the police and they are on the way. He mumbled something, turned around and started back towards the car quickly. He dropped the microwave in the trunk and closed it. During this time I advanced towards the car with him while keeping about 15ft or so distance between us. When he turned from closing the trunk, he faced me again and I ordered him to stop once more. He replied that he was leaving and that I needed to mind my own business. At this point I pulled the handgun from behind me and pointed it at him... telling him once more to sit on the ground... NOW! I fully expected him to comply at this point, but he looked right at me and said, "NO!.. what are you going to do.. Shoot me??" He turned from me, ran over to the car and jumped in while I orded him to stop two more times. I didn't know if he had a weapon in the car or not, so didn't pursue him to the car door. He started the car up and drove off.. I took note of the vehicle description and tag number as he left. Shortly there after the PD arrived. I gave the description and tag number to them, they knew exactly who I described and later that day picked him up at his house.

Tell me what I did wrong.. besides not staying in my house and minding my own business.

Would you protect your neighbor's property? Btw, this woman is one of our very good friends too.. not just a "neighbor".

atlctyslkr
March 22, 2006, 11:37 AM
I think what you tried to do was a really noble thing but unfortunately most states don't allow you to use deadly force to defend your own property much less someone else's. I think in that situation I might have gone out there with my gun (concealed) and waited for the individual to come out and I would have photographed him. Maybe photographed the vehicle and tried to get the plate as well.

What you were doing was taking on the the role of law enforcement. Check your state statues to see if you can use deadly force to stop a felony (of an kind). I know that if I'm in a store and someone tries to hold it up I can shoot the agressor even if I haven't been personally threatened but I don't think I can use a firearm to stop a burglary.

Your situation brings up a good point. Threatening to use deadly force when you can't can actually put you in a real bad situation. Some states see that as YOU being the agressor.

There is a story I read a few weeks ago about a guy in Tennessee who did something similar to what you did and ended up shooting the robber, now he is a felon. I'll try to find it an post it.

I'm on your side it's the law that isn't! Alot of places allow private citizens to join a Sherriff's reserve or something like that. Gives you limited LE powers but allows you to play cop if you want in situations like this.

invention_45
March 22, 2006, 11:46 AM
I think I would have gotten the tag # and called the police.

But if I felt compelled to do more, I would have to keep in mind that you have no standing to protect your neighbor's property. If I wanted to try to do so anyway (and this is a really big if), I'd go outside with gun tucked away but with a camera out. Snap a photo of him, staying well inside your property line. This may cause him to come to you for your camera.

Once he crosses the line, things are different. In Florida, you are allowed to use whatever force necessary to remove a trespasser. I doubt that having your photo taken could be a defense against trespassing, so you are now within your rights to force him to leave as long as he's pursuing the camera, which you, of course, don't give him.

This would end with one of three results. The bad guy says screw it and just leaves, you still have the photo. Or. The bad guy pursues the camera and, in the meantime, the cops show up. Or. The bad guy pursues the camera and, in your efforts to remove him from your property, things escalate to where deadly force is needed.

However, considering that Murphy will be watching over you throughout the entire event, maybe it's better just to call the cops and be done with it.

Dan M.
March 22, 2006, 11:49 AM
It could be argued, Gomer, that you put yourself in jeopardy twice--once from the BG, who may have been armed, and then again if the police arrived to find an armed man standing in a yard. Someone else's microwave (or other stuff) isn't worth the danger to you or the legal ramifications. Remember--you can only justifiably draw your weapon and shoot under immediate and unavoidable danger of death or great bodily harm. Neither one of those qualifications applied in this case. It's admirable that you wanted to protect your neighbor's stuff, especially with her being a single mom who undoubtedly struggles to provide for her two kids. But she probably has home owners insurance. Even if she didn't, she'd rathe have you as an across the street neighbor than an in jail neighbor or worse yet, a dead neighbor. The scenario could've played out much worse. Getting the tag and a description, which you ended up doing, was the best way to go.

Eghad
March 22, 2006, 11:59 AM
When he was in the house I would probably given him a flat tire or two...

pax
March 22, 2006, 12:10 PM
Tell me what I did wrong.. besides not staying in my house and minding my own business.
More than one way to skin a cat.

You know, rather than confronting the guy, I think I would have just pulled the van out of my own driveway and blocked his exit. Then gone back into my own house, quick.

Reading your story, I thought you were going to grab his keys and get back to your house in a hurry. That would have worked too.

(I'm a coward. I'm just trying to think of ways to stop the guy without confronting him. You were fortunate he decided to run rather than attacking you. Bullets go both directions.)

Edited to add, one more thing. You should've got the tag number first in any case. Too chancy to glance at it while he's leaving -- though I know you didn't expect him to leave!

pax

PATH
March 22, 2006, 12:24 PM
Never ever pull a gun and point it at someone unless you intend to use it. Unless human life is involved just get the info and call PD. Your life is worth a whole lot more than a microwave or any other replaceable property. Chalk this one up to experience and move on. Just my .02 cents!

JackB03
March 22, 2006, 01:32 PM
He man, its good that you'd stand up for your good friend like that. I would have probably done the same thing. I like how you went behind the tree. I dont know if you did this, but maybe you shouldve allowed to profile him some more. Making sure he didnt have a gun on him. Also, you could've allowed him to keep stealing things out of the house while the PD was on there way. If he closed his trunk before the PD got there, then you could've pulled the guy and told him to stop. (NOTE: I would check to see if you can use a firearm against a felon in your state.)

If you can use a firearm, this is the scenario I would use. Maybe you couldve ran to the porch by the door, and when he came out with the microwave, tackle him or pull the guy. Hold him until the PD come. If he runs, shoot him in the leg. I know it may sound fullish to some, but you stopped the guy. He isnt going anywhere.

Thats me though.

Jack

nefshooter
March 22, 2006, 02:00 PM
That is the reason i carry OC pepper foam along with my Taurus 85. A face full of that he sure isn't going to be driving off!!!!! It's not deadly force you just hope you die!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:barf:

Big Calhoun
March 22, 2006, 02:44 PM
Personally, I think the better approach would to been to arm yourself, have your wife grab a video camera (if available) to record the events, car, perp, etc.; confront the guy, and then just let him leave. I wouldn't have showed the gun unless he had a weapon. It's completely noble what you did but property can be replaced. I'd rather have a good amount of evidence to find the guy rather than get into an armed confrontation. That's just my simplistic opinion.

SW_fan
March 22, 2006, 02:48 PM
Remember--you can only justifiably draw your weapon and shoot under immediate and unavoidable danger of death or great bodily harm.


NOT TRUE.

In Texas you can draw your weapon anytime in an attempt to apprehend or in attempt to prevent a felony from happening. That doesn't mean you can threaten to kill them. But you can draw down and detain.

PinnedAndRecessed
March 22, 2006, 03:17 PM
you can draw your weapon anytime in an attempt to apprehend

And if they refuse? How much latitude does one have in such an "attempt?"

Call me old school, but a weapon should only be drawn with the intent of using it. And one should only use a weapon if one's life is in danger. Maybe even if one's property is in danger.

But never to protect a neighbor's microwave.

Just curious. How did the man know she was gone? What "business" was our hero supposed to ignore? What was the relationship of the man and the woman?

SW_fan
March 22, 2006, 03:40 PM
I'm not saying I would have done the same thing. However, you can be justified in drawing to apprehend. If they refuse? In your own home,shoot. In your neighbors home, just call the cops. I wouldnt draw in this guys scenario. I was just saying that you ARE justified in drawing in such a situation. would you? That is your call, but you can in Texas, that is all I'm saying.

gomer
March 22, 2006, 04:08 PM
Just curious. How did the man know she was gone? What "business" was our hero supposed to ignore? What was the relationship of the man and the woman?

Come to find out later he was a one time member of her church that had gotten addicted to pain killers after an accident where he hurt his back badly. He knew she had two kids who attended school/daycare and that she would be gone during the day. Besides stealing the microwave and other electronics, he had cleaned her medicine cabinet out.

I've had a few months now to reflect back upon my actions that day and that experience, coupled with the advice from some of you guys have changed the way I'd handle something like that in the future.

cfromc
March 22, 2006, 04:43 PM
Wow, interesting story. I always gain the most value out of these real-life events and think one actual event is worth 100 "scenarios". It is easy to Monday QB but I think I would have 1) called 911, then 2) took pictures of the burgler and his vehicle. Since you had two people, you and your wife I would say have wife call 911, then have wife takes pictures then, determine if you could safely disable the vehicle W/O burgler seeing you. That's a big if, because what if he is armed. Are you willing to have an armed confrontation because he sees you flattening his tire(s)? If you can get to the car right as he walks into the house I'd say you have a good chance of getting the keys or flattening a tire or cutting a radiator hose before he gets back out if you work real fast but I don't know if even getting out of your house is worth it in this case.

jcoiii
March 22, 2006, 04:54 PM
I too thought you were going to take the keys. I think that would have brilliant.

stephen426
March 22, 2006, 05:04 PM
Your actions were admirable and I would be glad to have more neighbors like you. Many people now a days don't want to get involved in anything that does not affect them. My old house was burglerized a few years back and the method of entry was a brick through a sliding glass door. I'm not sure how many of my neighbors are home during the day but someone had to have heard something. Most people even ignore burglar alarms rather than call the police.

You did take a personal risk though and I would have told the police that the crime was in progress. This is much more urgent than sending someone over to write a report. If the estimated response time was short, I would have either photographed or video taped the burglar. I would have also gotten the vehicle description and license plate first as mentioned above. I think a face full of mace would also be a good way to stop the person so the police have more time to respond. I don't think I would have used my car to block him in and force a confrontation though.

All in all, they got the bad guy and you weren't injured. I would have to say good job.

jcoiii
March 22, 2006, 05:31 PM
TN code annotated 39-11-614

in brief- you may use force to defend your property, but not deadly force with the following stipulations:
"...force is immediately necessary to prevent or terminate the other's trespass...or unlawful interference.."
or if you have been unlawfully dispossessed and want to immediately recover it.

TCA 39-11-615
"a person is justified in threatening or using force against another to protect real or personal property of a third person if, under the cirumstances of as the person reasonably believes them to be, the person would be justified under 39-11-614 in threatening or using force to protect the person's own real or personal property."

As I read these, in TN, a neighbor can use less than deadly force in the above scenario. Pepper spray, physical restraint, etc is fine. A firearm (or any other deadly force) is not.

PinnedAndRecessed
March 22, 2006, 05:31 PM
I think a face full of mace would also be a good way to stop the person so the police have more time to respond.

With all due respect, friends, you need to seriously consider what you're saying.

If such a situation arose, you would not know the specifics. You would not know the relationship between the parties involved. Maybe the man breaking in was the jilted boyfriend. Maybe it was his microwave. Maybe it was nothing more than a domestic dispute. Maybe they had a lover's quarrel.

Consider the following scenario. And I say "scenario" as in hypothetical. (On another forum I did similarly but some idiot was too stupid to understand the hypothetical part.)

Anyway, here you are. You witness the above. You rush over, without knowing the facts. You mace this guy. He's screaming. His girlfriend, the owner of the house comes home. She's not mad at him, anymore, because he's on the ground screaming. Now she's calling the cops on you.

The cops show up and bust you for felonious assault. Both she and the man are pressing charges.

You can't just go macing people. You can't just pull a gun on people. And before you resort to any form of violence or threat of violence you had bloody well better know what the laws are in your respective state.

jcoiii
March 22, 2006, 05:36 PM
P&R,
I think a Defense Atty could apply the "reasonable" defense and you'd be ok. Add to that the fact that this is not a "scenario" but an actual event in which the neighbors knew each other. Given the totality of circumstances, I'd say intervention would be more than fine in this case.

In your scenario, you don't know the neighbor due to the fact that you don't know if the "burgler" is the SO or not. It's an entirely different set of facts in this hypothetical than what actually occured. I know my neighbors and many of their friends (at least enough to recognize their cars and faces). In the case the OP posted, he knew the neighbors and also knew that this person did not live in the neighborhood. Given that knowledge set, it's unlikely that he'd interrupt his neighbor's SO and thus place himself in the consequences you described.

BillCA
March 22, 2006, 06:31 PM
First and foremost, I think gomer did what we all want our neighbors to do -- be caring enough about their neighbors to take positive action and help keep our neighborhoods safe.

With regards to the actions, I'll admit that I was rooting for gomer through his scenario -- hoping the PD arrived to find the BG down in the "felony prone" position. However, with state laws varying so much it is difficult to use a "one size fits all" answer.

As to Mr. PinnedandRecessed who keeps asking what the relationship is between the intruder/burglar and the female resident -- it's an irrelevant point. Re-read the initial scenario. Guy backs into the driveway, opens trunk. Okay, so he's been asked to take her [fill in blank] to be repaired. Suspicious, but not illegal. But then he walks up and kicks the door in -- without knocking, ringing the bell or otherwise trying to determine if anyone is home. That's what the cops would call serious probable cause. If he'd been invited to perform some task or had a key, he'd have paused to unlock the door or knock. Neither happened, so the logical "reasonable man" presumption is that this is a burglary (at least) in progress.

Were it me, I think I would have waited for him to be walking away from me and yelled "DON'T MOVE!", then followed that quickly with "Set that down and put your hands on top of your head, NOW!" If he complies, the next item is to get him to kneel down and remain that way until the cops arrive. If he turns around, as described and asks if you're going to shoot him, respond "Only if you make a move." The next decision is his. (Whether you shoot him or not is up to you and any threat he presents).

I should note that if your local PD has a history of long response times it's not a good thing to try apprehension like this. If several minutes go by and the PD doesn't show up, your BG might get the idea they AREN'T coming and try to force your hand.

Rightwinger
March 22, 2006, 06:37 PM
I can't say that I would have done the same, but at the same time I see nothing wrong with your actions. NOBODYS spouse/boyfriend/girlfriend enters the house with peacefull intent by kicking in the front door. I don't give a damn what his need for the microwave was...

I would have probably aired out the guys tires and let him deal with it while waiting for the police.

DWARREN123
March 22, 2006, 06:40 PM
I think you did good!

PythonGuy
March 22, 2006, 07:05 PM
What you did is probably illegal in most states, you'd go to jail and never own a gun again. Your life wasn't threatened, get the plate number and call 911, that's all you should have done. I know all the "hero's" and "tough guys" on here will tell you how great you did, I hope that gives you solace when you are in jail and spending your life saving to defend your decision.

brickeyee
March 22, 2006, 07:51 PM
Stand immediately in front of the care and instruct the guy to stay put.
If he puts the car in gear you are now in danger of grave bodily harm.
Step to the side and fire.
You also could have put yourself between the perp and the exit from the house. When he approaches after being warned you are entitled to take this as a threat and fire.
Now you now why the police like to block the exit.
No one said interrupting a crime in progress was a safe activity.
Even in Texas, you will go a lot further in court if the perp threatened your life.

And law be dammed, I am not going to kill someone over property.

Anthony2
March 22, 2006, 08:42 PM
Personally, I think your heart was in the right place...I would do the same for my neighbors as they treat us as their own family...

I think your better course of action would have been to:

1- if possible remove keys and go back home
2- if not block the exit by standing on the street infront of the vehicle... and if the perp. tried to run you over, you would be on public property, instead of anothers' property...(I would think this would remove any grey areas in the use of deadly force)

just my thoughts...in any case you did what you beleive was right:D

bdcc11
March 22, 2006, 08:53 PM
I would let the air out of one tire with a puncture on the inside. If I cut the tire on the inside he would not know it was anything other than a simple flat and may take the time to change the tire while the police are on the way. I don't want someone to know that the gig is up until it is to late. I'm not the brave type that will put myself in harms way unless someone's life or well being was on the line.

kennybs plbg
March 22, 2006, 11:40 PM
What you did is probably illegal in most states, you'd go to jail and never own a gun again. Your life wasn't threatened, get the plate number and call 911, that's all you should have done. I know all the "hero's" and "tough guys" on here will tell you how great you did, I hope that gives you solace when you are in jail and spending your life saving to defend your decision.

Its legal in your state of NY, whats that old saying: if you don't know your rights, you have none.

kenny b

DunedinDragon
March 23, 2006, 04:28 AM
First off, you need to know the laws of your state that apply to this situation. It's probably NOT a good idea to try to start figuring this out when you see the guy breaking into your neighbors house.

Here in Florida these are the rules:

776.031 Use of force in defense of others.--A person is justified in the use of force, except deadly force, against another when and to the extent that the person reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to prevent or terminate the other's trespass on, or other tortious or criminal interference with, either real property other than a dwelling or personal property, lawfully in his or her possession or in the possession of another who is a member of his or her immediate family or household or of a person whose property he or she has a legal duty to protect. However, the person is justified in the use of deadly force only if he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony. A person does not have a duty to retreat if the person is in a place where he or she has a right to be.

776.08 Forcible felony.--"Forcible felony" means treason; murder; manslaughter; sexual battery; carjacking; home-invasion robbery; robbery; burglary; arson; kidnapping; aggravated assault; aggravated battery; aggravated stalking; aircraft piracy; unlawful throwing, placing, or discharging of a destructive device or bomb; and any other felony which involves the use or threat of physical force or violence against any individual.

Based on that I would be within my rights to shoot the person as they are committing a burglary. Would I want to test that in this situation? Probably not. I'm with several of the others here. I'd use my phone, take a picture of the burglar and his car, and let the police handle it.

On the other hand part of me wants to say I'd do the same as you did but when the guy said, "What are you going to do? Shoot me?" I'd say, "yep, and I'd be perfectly justified in doing it ******* based on our laws here. Welcome to Florida jackass...now sit down or get yer head blown off."

T_man357
March 23, 2006, 06:31 AM
I'm not all that bright when it comes to some things but the second I read where you pulled your gun on a non threatening situtation (A guy holding a microwave walking away from you is definetley NOT LIFE THREATENING)
You pretty much lost me....Had you shot him you'd be in more trouble than you could possibly imagine!! Save pulling your gun for life threatening/ extreme situtations..

That's just my .02.. Not meant to be insulting in any way!!

GUNSMOKE45441
March 23, 2006, 08:32 AM
If we all had a neighbor like you ,the world would be a better place!!!
Well done!!!!

invention_45
March 23, 2006, 08:44 AM
gomer:

The way it turned out explains why I'd have started with the camera and 911.

You have no way of really knowing what is going on. 911 is required. The camera is like bait. If he was just a SO, then he might care about the photo, but maybe not enough to get into a brawl over it. If he was actually burglarizing and a pain killer addict, he would likely have driven away as fast as he could. If he were a semiprofessional burglar, I think he'd have wanted that camera bad. If he were a professional burglar, you probably wouldn't have ever seen him.

In other words, the worse the reason for his being there, the more he would want the camera.

The problem I see with trying to disable his vehicle is that you'd of course be doing that while he was inside. You have no way to know if he's glancing out the window watching you. If he is, and he's armed, he might emerge with his gun pulled and ready. You would not be. If he'll break in in the daytime, who's to say he won't just shoot you?

Now if the tire deflators meant shoot his tires out, well I don't know how much trouble you could get in doing that. I know that there are laws about discharging firearms in certain places and withing certain distances of places, but I'd have to look them up to decide.

PythonGuy
March 23, 2006, 09:05 AM
kennybs plbg, re-read you pistol permit laws and see if you are allowed to pull a handgun on a unarmed person because YOU think there might be some foul play going on. Honestly, some of you, in your zest to use your weapon, will look for any excuse to pull it out and play sherriff. Go and play cops and robbers, its your rear on the line, you'll go to jail, you'll pay tens of thousands of dollars to defend your position, have fun.

kennybs plbg
March 23, 2006, 10:30 AM
Your statement he should be in jail for his actions are rediculious. I'm not saying he should of shot the person but to pull his weapon to stop the burglary and address the situation was not illegal. It was his neighbor's home he was looking after and had every right too, as long as the relationship with the homeowner warrented it. In my neighborhood some of us have keys to each others houses. If an alarm would go and the police arive they are welcome to the keys.

Here you go in black and white, Artical 35 NYS Penal code.

S 35.20 Justification; use of physical force in defense of premises and
in defense of a person in the course of burglary. 1. Any person may use physical force upon another person when he
reasonably believes such to be necessary to prevent or terminate what he
reasonably believes to be the commission or attempted commission by such
other person of a crime involving damage to premises. He may use any
degree of physical force, other than deadly physical force, which he
reasonably believes to be necessary for such purpose, and he may use
deadly physical force if he reasonably believes such to be necessary to
prevent or terminate the commission or attempted commission of arson.
2. A person in possession or control of any premises, or a person
licensed or privileged to be thereon or therein, may use physical force
upon another person when he reasonably believes such to be necessary to
prevent or terminate what he reasonably believes to be the commission or
attempted commission by such other person of a criminal trespass upon
such premises. He may use any degree of physical force, other than
deadly physical force, which he reasonably believes to be necessary for
such purpose, and he may use deadly physical force in order to prevent
or terminate the commission or attempted commission of arson, as
prescribed in subdivision one, or in the course of a burglary or
attempted burglary, as prescribed in subdivision three.
3. A person in possession or control of, or licensed or privileged to
be in, a dwelling or an occupied building, who reasonably believes that
another person is committing or attempting to commit a burglary of such
dwelling or building, may use deadly physical force upon such other
person when he reasonably believes such to be necessary to prevent or
terminate the commission or attempted commission of such burglary.


kenny b

PythonGuy
March 23, 2006, 10:42 AM
One major problem with your argument Kenny, he didn't know at the time if it was a robbery. For example, an employee at my company was having marital problems, her husband came home and kicked the door in to get some of his stuff because he was leaving her. She called the police and they came as he was there, and they told her they can't do a thing, its his house too and as long as he wasn't hurting anyone, its his property to destroy. So if you are a neighbor and don't know who this guy is, or whats happening, you pull a gun on him and YOU go to jail. Why some of you think you are Charles Bronson is beyond me, take the plate number and call the police, they'll catch him if he is commiting a crime. But then you'd lose the "thrill" of pulling you gun out and playing Marshall Dillon. Most scenarios on here, as Mr. Meyer pointed out, is a cry for justification to pull your gun. Some of you just live for it, it defines you. I love guns and shooting, but this isn't the Old west, and unless your LIFE is threatened, your gun should remain in its holster. Grow up for god's sake, you sound like kids with a new toy.

rick_reno
March 23, 2006, 10:52 AM
I would have offered him the 36 inch Sony television I have sitting on my porch. I've been trying to get rid of it for months, I'm pretty sure two of us could have gotten it into his trunk. The damn thing is big and heavy.

gunslinger1911ACP
March 23, 2006, 10:57 AM
As much as I admire your courage, I would argue what others previously stated:


call the police
document the specs on the truck and BG
slash the tires
grab the keys to the truck, if possible
video record the event


If you pull a gun on the BG, and he knows where you live, you put your family at risk. What if he pulls a similar stunt on you next time, but comes back armed with friends to pay you a visit? What if from inside your neighbors house, he saw you, drew a weapon and injured or killed you?

That's my take.

kennybs plbg
March 23, 2006, 11:03 AM
New Toy? I probably have guns older then you.
I believe he was correct in pulling his weapon and equally correct in not shooting. It's a judgement call, he made it, stopped the burgary in progress, took down information that was needed for the arrest at a later time. Sounds kind of textbook to me and all within his legal right.

But some think he should be in jail, go figure:confused:

kenny b

PythonGuy
March 23, 2006, 11:18 AM
We just disagree on what a CCW or gun owner's responsibility is. My "new toy" comment wasn't aimed at you Kenny, and I doubt you have many gun's older then me. On the forum there are some people who own guns and like to shoot, target or hunting. There are some who carry and are reserved about it and would use their gun as a last resort in life threatening situations only. And then there are those that spend a big part of their day figuring out ways and situations that can pull that gun that is just burning a hole in their holster. Its pretty obvious to anyone with just a little common sense who is who. And its also obvious that these, however many, gun happy people will do the most harm when it comes to losing the rights to carry, or even own firearms. Because these people scare the average person who know's nothing about guns. The ones who have the ND's, or who look to pull a gun at any opportunity, you recognize anyone like that?

STAGE 2
March 23, 2006, 01:33 PM
There is something very telling about our society when a honest citizen going out of his way to protect his neighbor/her property and is admonished for his actions. Doing the right thing has nothing to do with legality

Legal or not (which I will concede his actions probably ran afoul of some penal code provision) were he my neighbor, I'd buy him dinner, and between the two of us we'd buy the best dressed attorney in the city should the need arise. I don't care what the law says, with a fair jury and assuming the perp had some priors, there is no way that he would be submitted to any penalty of consequence. This would be doubly so if you threatened to bring the media into it. Prosecutors, and city officals cringe at the mention of the name O'reilly/fox/insert your favorite news station here.

PythonGuy
March 23, 2006, 01:51 PM
STAGE 2 you are missing my main point, it was not known at the time if this was a bad guy, owner, boyfriend who owned the house, what gives any citizen the right to go and take it on himself to find out by pulling his gun no less? You want gangs of armed do gooders out playing cop? What if its you and you're the one who gets called out by a well meaning neighbor with a gun, you gonna shoot him? Most people on here get bent out of shape when a guy in a gun store points a weapon near them while checking it out, how about some stranger on your property doing it to you? Are you so blind you can't see the right thing to do here is take plate numbers, descriptions and call 911? What is with some of you guys??

gomer
March 23, 2006, 02:07 PM
STAGE 2 you are missing my main point, it was not known at the time if this was a bad guy, owner, boyfriend who owned the house,

I was 100% positive that this was a real live "bad guy". My wife and I have lived across the street from her for 6 years and talk to her on a daily basis. I know everyone that comes and goes from her house, as she does mine. If it was someones house that I wasn't familiar with and had ANY doubt about it being something related to an ex-boyfriend or the like.. I would have left it alone.

stephen426
March 23, 2006, 02:15 PM
Python Guy,

Gomer knows his neighbor. I understand your point that we as armed citizens have no rights to act as freelance policemen. His situation is different so lets leave out all of the hypotheticals and generalizations. If he didn't even know the name of his neighbor and went over there, than I might agree with you. Even if that was the case, I would call 911 and report it since the guy kicked the door in. If it was his house, then no harm done.

As I have already mentioned before, the only things he could have done better was to get the tag info first and possibly film or take pictures of the guy. I feel that pulling the gun may have gone a little too far and could be considered brandishing.

Gomer, I hope that nothing bad comes of your noble actions. Good job and be sure to stay on top of this guy's case. If he gets out of jail, he may come back looking for revenge.

PythonGuy
March 23, 2006, 02:30 PM
Last comment from me, going over there and asking whats going on is one thing, pulling a gun on someone NOT threatening your life is WRONG, period. I've seen car's at my neighbors when they aren't home and asked the people can I help them, and who are they looking for, I never did it while pulling a gun and that's when the line was crossed in my mind. DO what you want, say what you want, change the story and facts a hundred times, you had no right to pull that gun.

gomer
March 23, 2006, 02:34 PM
Btw,
Just as some relevant info. After the PD arrived a few officers drew their guns and went into the house to "clear the residence". After that they came back over and took my statement etc. I told them EXACTLY what my actions were, even the part about drawing on the guy. They didn't say a word to me about pulling my gun. The guy plead guilty to something that was reduced and never really went to jail after the initial arrest. I still see him in town occasionally. All of this occured in a small town in North Alabama.

My reasoning for pulling the gun was that if he was brazen enough (high enough?) to kick open her door in broad daylight, he probably wouldn't hesitate to rush me or try and harm me.. I wanted him to know that I wasn't playing and wanted every advantage I could have.

porkskin
March 23, 2006, 04:59 PM
gomer you did good. i grew up in dothan alabama and have been gone for 10 years. i love alabama and the people like you who defend neighborhoods and friends. in my part of bama, that guy deserves what he got. if you don't kick in folks' doors, you don't get guns pointed at you. in big city n.c. where i live now, the liberals have you afraid to use your gun for fear of suit or jail. i like the idea of, if you don't mess with other people or their stuff then you usually don't get drawn on.

STAGE 2
March 23, 2006, 07:43 PM
STAGE 2 you are missing my main point

Actually, no I'm not

it was not known at the time if this was a bad guy, owner, boyfriend who owned the house

True, and he didnt run over there and start waiving a gun around at the very first chance either.


what gives any citizen the right to go and take it on himself to find out by pulling his gun no less?

You're confusing duty with right. As a neighbor and a private citizen he has no duty to investigate. However he does has the right to investigate.



You want gangs of armed do gooders out playing cop? What if its you and you're the one who gets called out by a well meaning neighbor with a gun, you gonna shoot him?

No, but I certianly wouldn't characterize this guy as an armed do gooder by any stretch of the imagination. While the people in my neighborhood don't carry (at least that I know of) you can better believe that if they saw this going on they would definately pay this guy a visit with louisville in hand.

As for me, well I can pretty much gurarantee you that if I was going to someones house to pick up something that was mine I wouldn't go about doing it in a way that made it look like B&E.


Most people on here get bent out of shape when a guy in a gun store points a weapon near them while checking it out, how about some stranger on your property doing it to you? Are you so blind you can't see the right thing to do here is take plate numbers, descriptions and call 911? What is with some of you guys??

I guess that myself and my neighbors just dont take well to crime. Im sorry that you feel otherwise, and thats fine. However I'm inclined to think that given the choice, a felon would rather hit your neighborhood than mine.

Police have their place and their job, and for the most part they do it well. That said, they cannot be there for everything or do everything, and I refuse to sit on my couch and suck my thumb because "all I can do it call 911 and give them the license plate". No one said go in guns blazing. However I'm inclined to think that if we were all a bit more socially responsible and cared more about the things that dont have our names on them, kids could still go out and play at night, and people could leave their front doors unlocked like they once did without fear of some crackhead or inner city kid stopping in for a visit.

Playing rambo is dangerous, but sticking your head in the sand is just as bad, if not worse for society.

GUNSMOKE45441
March 24, 2006, 11:48 AM
Stage 2
+1
Well said!! You covered it all.

JJB2
March 24, 2006, 11:56 AM
+1+................