View Full Version : Sticky situation.......
December 31, 2006, 02:38 PM
Here's the deal........I have a concealed carry card in NC and I'm INSIDE my home early one evening and a car pulls through my front circular driveway but keeps going. A few minutes later he does it again, pulls through but doesn't stop. I'm a little on edge because of his actions and place a handgun on the hall table beside the front door. Let me say at this point that I'm INSIDE my home, I HAVE had a couple of drinks, but NOT to the point of being noticeably impaired. On his third pass he stops and sits in his car. I instruct the wife to call the police and I open the front door to observe his actions. He exits the car and stands in the driveway looking around. I opened the glass storm door and ask what he wants. He mumbles something that I cannot understand and begins walking toward the front door at a fairly quick clip. I retreat and close and lock the glass door. He reaches the door and begins to shake the handle as though to get in. I hold my left hand up and order him to stop and take the handgun in my right hand. He shakes the door some more and I level the gun at his chest and again order him to leave. At this point a PD cruiser pulls into the driveway and he bolts for his car. The PO intercepts him before he reaches the car and they talk for a few minutes and he leaves. The PO comes to the door and tells me that he was "lost".
FINALLY, here comes the question, what would have happened IF this creep had jerked the glass door open and I had fired on him???????? Bearing in mind that I HAD been drinking......????????? Would I have been up the creek without any means of propulsion or on firm ground????? No flames please......
December 31, 2006, 03:48 PM
Something doesn't ring right here...not your story...but of the guys actions and response. If he had been lost, why stop in some dudes driveway and not just the street curb?? Why does he try to OPEN your door and not ring the doorbell or knock?? Why does he not STOP his actions when he hears you yelling for him to desist and leave...especially if he sees a friggin gun pointed at him?? Why does he "bolt" for his car only after he sees the squad car pull up...if he was truley lost and needed directions...wouldn't it make sense to go up to the officer and ask for direction and not try to evade him? I know this does not answer your question as to what the ramifications would be if you had shot him, but I think that this event needs more investigating.
December 31, 2006, 04:04 PM
While the fella posting previous to me finds you story "not ringing true", I and no argument intended, but, Ive seen people everywhere act mighty strange sometimes...
With that being said... The only reason I can think of, other than he did have bad intentions that he shook at your door was because he truly wanted to talk, rather ask directions? However, the second your hands came up, one saying "halt", the other with pistol in it, I woulda backed right off. Any sane person would... For that reason, even though it woulda been an awful tradgedy, once he crosses the threshold of your doorway, you've warned him, he's bought n paid for. You have no way of knowing wether he is armed or not, what his intentions are.
Here is one problem, even with a "legal" amount of alcohol in your blood, you may escape prosecution, however, not persecution in a civil action.
I have actually heard of a few situations where terminally ill people had forced not only police officers, but regular citizens into that dreaded moment of "Shoot, Don't Shoot." Im glad you didn't have to do it. Best, Dave
December 31, 2006, 06:01 PM
Bailey, if this happened recently I would make a call to the non-emergency number at your police department and ask to meet with the Captain over the patrol division.
From what you described, it sounds like the responding officer(s) blew it off and followed bad procedure. He should have taken the drivers license and asked the subject to wait in his own vehicle while he talked privately with you.
As to your question, unless there were additional facts that you did not state, in North Carolina a resident may use lethal force to protect himself when he believes that such force is necessary to prevent his death or serious injury. You are allowed to defend your home against intrusion.
Fortunately it did not come to that.
December 31, 2006, 06:05 PM
FWIW, . . . I would probably have handled the situation a bit differently. No flame intended, . . . but I would not have opened my door, . . . nor would I have had a conversation with him such as you did.
Anyone coming on another's property needs to have a purpose, and be willing to share that purpose openly. If he were lost, . . . he should have just come up and rang the door bell.
That said, . . . I would have been curious the first time, . . . suspicious the second, . . . calling the cops the third, . . . and waiting inside with the door locked for either the cops to show (about 30 minutes where I live) or the guy to bust down the door or for him to go away. But then again, I am not spry enough to go one on one with any determined bg, . . . so I have a "hole up" attitude anyway, . . . hole up, firearm in hand, make them force the issue, and then just do what one has to do to end the altercation.
Around my neck of the woods, . . . had you shot him under the circumstances you described, . . . you would count yourself very lucky to get off over it.
May God bless,
December 31, 2006, 06:14 PM
FWIW, . . . I would probably have handled the situation a bit differently. No flame intended, . . . but I would not have opened my door, . . . nor would I have had a conversation with him such as you did.+1
Don't open your door. Keep a strong dead-bolted door between you and someone you don't know.
December 31, 2006, 09:40 PM
Uh...Dave...did you actually read my post or just the first sentence! I did NOT say that his story did not ring true! But the actions of the guy trying to open the door etc...read the entire post!
January 1, 2007, 09:02 AM
I too have to agree with Dwight55 on this, perhaps the alcohol didn't impair your judgement, but it did influence your choice I believe. Based on what you posted I'd have called the police, explained it to them, then waited behind closed doors with the gun ready in case of a break-in. Opening doors and having a gun could be considered aggressive behavior, you have to think what would you do if you didn't have a weapon. I am glad it all worked out OK, and you and your family weren't hurt.
January 2, 2007, 08:51 AM
ALL of the facts and actions were given, I held nothing back. The purpose of my question concerned the fact that I HAD been drinking. What if I had been forced to shoot this guy while I was under the influence???? As far as the doors go, the wooden door stays open if we are awake but the glass door is always locked. And then there's the officer, no I didn't like the fact that he didn't identify the guy and possibly run his ID to see what he was all about, and YES, I did have a word with the officer about his lack of proper response.
So, I'm back to the question of whether or not we can defend ourselves in our homes once we have a beer or a drink??????
January 2, 2007, 11:02 AM
Just because you've "tipped" a few doesn't mean that you can't defend yourself....LEGALLY! Sure, it might become an "issue" of sorts, but that should be an understandable situation IF the shooting is deemed as being both "reasonable" and "necessary".
In the story you gave, the ACTIONS of that man raised a substantial amount of suspicion on your part. The driving onto your property TWICE, then the rattling of your front door wouldn't justify the use of deadly force, but at least you were armed and ready to deal with the situation if that man had forced entry into your home. And, as you mentioned, the man "bolting" to his car when he saw the police vehicle would cause just about anyone to think that the man was up to NO good!
If that same "lost" man shows up on your property again, STAY INSIDE, call the police and give them a quick history of the first incident, then prepare yourself for what MIGHT happen. Hopefully, the police will respond as quickly as they did the first time....and handle the situation as a "criminal" behavior....as in "prowling"!
January 2, 2007, 11:21 AM
I would have asked the responding officer for his supervisors name and number, and recounted to him that he let a suspect go without speaking to you first to get all your details. Legally, from what you describe, the man tried to forceably enter your home without permission. Its not like he is going to be serving hard time, but just getting cuffed, processed, and released might serve to keep him from coming back. Sounds like someone didn't want the paperwork.
January 2, 2007, 11:22 AM
The guy was definately not there because he was lost. I also agree with DesertShooter that you have a right to defend yourself even if you have had a few drinks. After all, you are in your own home. I don't have any problem with Baily opening the door if the unknown person is at a distance. That way he can determine the reason for his being there (it may be legitimate). If the unknown person was right by the door, I would not open the door.
Did you consider giving your wife a gun as well? You did not mention if she had been drinking. Besides, 2 against 1 are always better odds. I would have yelled to the person after he started shaking the door, "I am armed and the police are on their way. If you come in here, you will be shot." No one should be shaking your door, especially if they know you are home. Overall, I'd say you did a good job. A good shoot is a good shoot, but alcohol plays a big factor in a questionable shoot. I'm glad your situation wasn't worse.
January 2, 2007, 11:46 AM
These were my points, but somehow got mis-interpreted. The guy was NOT there because he was lost!! As for shooting a man in your home after you've had a few drinks...I would THINK that Breaking and Entering would warrant the same results whether you've been drinking or not. However!! Before you go and shoot anyone, I think it would be prudent to dial 9-1-1 and call for a police officer and keep the operator on the phone through the whole mess until the officer arrives or in case you have NO CHOICE but to shoot. They record those calls and they are quite clear.
January 2, 2007, 11:58 AM
Something doesn't ring right here...not your story...but of the guys actions and response.
The real stinker is why the LEO let him go without getting your story first...
and after seeing him run to his car...
I have never known any LEO to be so stupid as to release a suspect before getting the whole story...
This sounds like a "fish tale" to me... are we bait fishing or trolling? :p
January 2, 2007, 01:09 PM
For the answer to your question . As long as you can prove that if another person was placed in the same situation that they too would also feel in fear for their life than you are fine. Drinks or no drinks, however if you jumped the gun and the jury believed that your life was not in danger you could face some trouble, again drinks or no drinks.
As far as your situation, I don't think I would have showed my firearm just yet. This was broad daylight right? If you really believed that this man was threat you should have shut and locked the wood door and wait for cops. Are you a native of NC? The reason I ask is I live what some would consider out in the country, a strange car coming up my long driveway is not unusual, and I don't perceive it as a threat under normal circumstances. The pulling into the driveway a couple times fits the story the guy was lost. I am not saying you over reacted, but I am saying that different situations can be perceived differently depending on what area of the country you are in and how and where you are raised. Glad you are safe.
If you live in a small town I would be careful about complaining on the officer, what do you expect for $10 per hour. Our local police are severely under trained, and I don't expect to much from them. Sorry, there are some good guys, but not nearly trained enough. The area needs to learn you get what you paid for.
January 2, 2007, 08:09 PM
As far as the doors go, the wooden door stays open if we are awake but the glass door is always locked.I STRONGLY suggest that you change that behavior. Keep the wooden door closed and deadbolted at all times.
January 2, 2007, 08:51 PM
Baily asked the question: "So, I'm back to the question of whether or not we can defend ourselves in our homes once we have a beer or a drink??????"
My answer is in all seriousness, . . . yessir, help yourself. But you really should keep in mind that first of all, . . . there is a whole nother world out there that does not like firearms at all, people who shoot em at other people even less, and people who shoot em at other people after drinking, . . . even less.
One beer, one shot, one mixed drink DOES IN FACT affect your ability and reasoning, your reaction, your total cognitive abilities: and that is why I stand behind my original thought, . . . close the door, . . . lock it, . . . call the cops, . . . keep yourself inside until the LEO has done his job and comes knocking.
May God bless,
January 5, 2007, 04:39 PM
So many issues....... Let's start at the door, the wooden door is always open because my office is located 15 feet inside that door, the glass door has a deadbolt and is tempered, he would have to break the glass to gain entry. Arm my wife???... (I'm harmless, SHE's the one a BG had better worry about)she was armed (Rem 870 12 ga 8 shots of #4 buck) and in the master bedroom, on the phone with the dispatcher until the officer went 10-97. I agree that the guy was up to no good, and that I could have complained to the Chief about the officer not reacting correctly. Unfortunately it's a small town with maybe 8 to 10 officers on duty at any given time and I'm sure he (the officer) would have remembered me, not good.... I'm really glad that things didn't escalate and basically ended peacefully. There is absolutely no doubt on my part that I would have prevailed in the incident BUT, it's the aftereffects that scares the heck out of me...... Thanks for all of the replies and the differing viewpoints....
January 5, 2007, 05:48 PM
AFAIC, you did everything right, but one -- you opened the door. Grabbing a firearm and calling the cops was smart, but opening the door was not.
I once had some juvies parked in front of my house, and stupidly right under a streetlight. I called the cops and dropped the .38 into my pocket, but I never left the house. Two cop cars arrived within 5 minutes and boxed them in. I don't know what was going on, but for something like that, I'd rather trust the cops and just stay in the house.
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