I believe I read a report indicating that the next door neighbor was the sister of the dad, and therefore the aunt of the prowler. Most people are going to go next door to help their sister, as opposed to telling her to call the police and sit tight for whatever amount of time it takes for them to respond.
And the same report identified the shiny object in the boy's hand as a knife.
So, if the dad/brother was on his way next door to provide aid and protection to his sister, and a masked person rushes him with a knife, I don't see how he can be expected to react any other way. I am sure he is heartbroken, but I hope he sees the rationality of his actions at some point.
As to the title of the thread, while I certainly subscribe to all of the Four Rules, including being sure of one's target, a masked man approaching with a knife is a legitimate target by any reasonable standard. It cannot be attendant to a defender to unmask or in any other way insist on identifying an armed masked assailant before defending himself and his loved ones.
Last edited by TailGator; September 30, 2012 at 11:09 AM.