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Old June 24, 2012, 03:59 PM   #1
Joe_Pike
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The Police Just Left My House, Part II

Christmas morning I posted that someone had tried to break into my house. The police arrested the guy who turned out to be really drunk and really lucky that he didn't get in. It turned out well as I really didn't want to end up having to shoot someone. That is an experience that I can live without.

However, the experience taught me that I could function and do what I needed to do under that stressful situation.

Well, this morning, about 3:30 am, I had someone else attempt to break in. The guy that tried to break in early Christmas morning broke a pane of glass out of the door that leads out to the carport. I'm assuming he was trying to unlock the deadbolt, which is keyed on both sides, so he wasn't successful. I just filled the hole with cardboard as I wasn't sure whether I was going to replace the glass with wood or another pane of glass.

This time the scum punched the cardboard out of the hole. The noise woke me up. I grabbed a gun and the phone, went to a back bedroom and grabbed a bigger gun and flashlight. I came back into the original room I was in and looked down to the door to the carport and was watching the lowlife trying to get in. Again, lock is keyed on both sides, so, he wasn't successful.

I called 911 and they sent two units. As I was on the phone I was watching one (I think there were two of them) walk around under my carport. I told the 911 operator that they were still there, but by the time the police arrived they were gone. The police arrived within 2-3 minutes, but the guys had vanished (I have a sneaking suspicion that they live close).

The first time there was a huge adrenaline dump and a lot of emotion after everything was said and done. This time there wasn't much but controlled anger. I was very calm throughout. I waited until daylight to try and get some sleep in case they decided to come back. Now I'm headed to Home Depot to by supplies to reinforce the two back doors. If they are going to get in, they are going to have to work at it a little harder.
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Old June 24, 2012, 04:28 PM   #2
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Wow, scary, but sounds like you did ok. I guess the obvious thing is to fix the window to eliminate the temptation. I know some in the security industry use the term “hardening the target” which means doing everything you can to make your home less enticing. Anyway, glad it all worked out…
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Old June 24, 2012, 04:46 PM   #3
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what would the consequences be of going outside with gun HOLSTERED on your side,and holding them until the police show up?
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Old June 24, 2012, 04:52 PM   #4
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Motion detector lights and remote video cameras are sold at Home Depot, too. Not very expensive, either.

Double-sided deadbolts turned out to be a wise choice, eh?

Glad you came out unharmed both times.

Are the police taking your home invasion attempts seriously? (Forensics might be able to get fingerprints, shoeprints etc. If not, your City Counsel Representative might help.

Good luck.

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Old June 24, 2012, 04:53 PM   #5
hogdogs
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In Fla, You could, in that situation, hold them at gunpoint legally as they attempted a home invasion which is on the list of "aggravated felony" crimes we can use force to detain for...

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Old June 24, 2012, 04:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
what would the consequences be of going outside with gun HOLSTERED on your side,and holding them until the police show up?
How do you know there are only 2 of the scumbags? Going outside is in my mind risky, as they could have an armed 3rd buddy hiding in the bushes waiting for just such an eventuality. Unlikely maybe, but you never know. IMHO, you are better off taking up a solid defensive position within the home, grab the best gun you've got, call the cops and lay in wait.

Depending on how gun friendly your locale is, going outside to confront the scumbags might turn out fine, or you could be painted as a bloodthirsty gun nut looking for a fight. But for the reasons outlined above, I think generally it isn't a good idea to leave the relative safety of your home.
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Old June 24, 2012, 04:58 PM   #7
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Double-sided deadbolts turned out to be a wise choice, eh?
I've bought two homes thus far in my life, and in addition to having locks rekeyed, one of the first things I do is replace standard deadbolts (key on outside and a knob on the inside) with the type that require a key on both sides on any door that has a window or a window with easy reach of the deadbolt knob.
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Old June 24, 2012, 05:03 PM   #8
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crazy! glad your ok...sounds like you handled it well.
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Old June 24, 2012, 05:06 PM   #9
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Glad everything turned out ok. Kinda makes one wonder about home invasions (yes, this would be considered a home invasion attempt) and its odds of occurring in some locations.
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Old June 24, 2012, 05:13 PM   #10
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Satsifying, but risky

Quote:
Originally Posted by kmaysob
what would the consequences be of going outside with gun HOLSTERED on your side,and holding them until the police show up?
If it worked, great. Tactically, going one-on-one with an intruder who may or may not be armed and may or may not have more than one armed confederate is more risk than property (usually) is worth.

Depending on jurisdiction, it may or may not be legal for you to confront an intruder outside the dwelling if you are armed. (I know, I know, such a law is like saying we have no right to protect ourselves or our property, but such laws do exist and could get you into trouble in certain states and cities in this country.)

In any event, if I felt compelled to confront an intruder, my sidearm would only be holstered if my hands were already filled with a shotgun, flashlight and phone (wait....I just counted. I think I need a bluetooth device.)

If I felt compelled to confront a mere trespasser, yes, holstered would be appropriate.

How to tell the difference between an innocent trespasser who is merely lost from an intruder, perhaps with evil intent is difficult. Thus the default of my home defense plan is to take a defensive position, use my "outside voice" to challenge (inquire of) the person(s) and call for backup (in the order that seems most appropriate in the circumstances).

What would you do if he 1) stopped, turned and walked away 2) stopped, turned and walked away taking your lawn mower with him 3) stopped, and with open hands, raised in surrender, began walking slowly towards you 4) looked at you in a confused manner and started asking questions in Gaelic, Mandarin, Urdu or something and stepped towards you?

If you can't answer those questions without hesitation, I suggest you are not prepared to hold someone until the police arrived. (By the way, I have done this, but without hesitation, allowed the perps to walk away and would not have behaved differently had I been armed or not.)

Bottom line. Holding someone at gunpoint (or even holstered) is fraught with danger for both of you.

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Old June 24, 2012, 06:47 PM   #11
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A few years ago, my neighbor caught a thief in his garage. We suspect that he was the same one who had broken into my garage a couple of weeks before, but I scared him off with the outside lights and yelling. Anyway, while he was holding the guy at shotgun point, the guy was talking up a blue streak and threatened that if my neighbor didn't let him go, he and his buddies would return and harm the wife and children. My neighbor let him go before the police arrived. This same thief was caught a few streets over, I don't remember how long after my street and my neighbor was called to identify him...but he refused still in fear for his family.
This was when I lived in Michigan which at that time was even more gun unfriendly than it is now.

Richard
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Old June 24, 2012, 07:13 PM   #12
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Colorado changed the law a few years back. Had you lived in Colorado the only fact that is important is were they on your property with or without your approval. If the answer is without you may open fire no other facts needed as long as they stayed on your property. The gun control crowd screamed bloody murder when this law was passed! They called it the "Make my day law", and predicted wholesale murder of innocents would occur. Amazingly enough they were wrong People tended to handle things the same way you did, only opening fire when needed. I just don't see many of us seeking opportunities to shoot people, even obviously criminal people who tried to get into our home. It's happened to me before and calling what I felt anger was probably not going far enough. I respect your strength and restraint Brother Man, good job!
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Old June 24, 2012, 07:34 PM   #13
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I don't know if the OP had family in the house, but if so, the first order of business it to protect them. He handled that fine.

Going outside, especially to confront an unknown number of hostiles (he saw two but apparently doesn't know if there were more) would be a tactical mistake. It would expose his flank and leave the house, and any innocents in it, unguarded. Seems that would be an unwise move since the threat was effectively neutralized.
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Old June 24, 2012, 07:48 PM   #14
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I live alone, so, I just have to worry about myself. The 911 operator asked me if I had a safe place to go in the house. I told her that I was able to see both entry points and the carport from my position and that I was armed so I was fine.

I believe in Missouri that I would have been within in my right to shoot the guy that was at my carport door since his head, shoulder and arm was in my house while he was trying to defeat the lock.

The spot where a window used to be is now covered with plywood for the moment and tonight I will run a 2x4 resting in brackets between the two back doors that are opposite of each other. That way if someone does try to force the door open, the 2x4 should push against the other door and prevent that.
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Old June 25, 2012, 11:52 AM   #15
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Quote:
A few years ago, my neighbor caught a thief in his garage. We suspect that he was the same one who had broken into my garage a couple of weeks before, but I scared him off with the outside lights and yelling. Anyway, while he was holding the guy at shotgun point, the guy was talking up a blue streak and threatened that if my neighbor didn't let him go, he and his buddies would return and harm the wife and children. My neighbor let him go before the police arrived. This same thief was caught a few streets over, I don't remember how long after my street and my neighbor was called to identify him...but he refused still in fear for his family.
This was when I lived in Michigan which at that time was even more gun unfriendly than it is now.

Richard
And it's at that point that I would have pulled the trigger.
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Old June 25, 2012, 01:05 PM   #16
Frank Ettin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rha600
Quote:
...while he was holding the guy at shotgun point, the guy was talking up a blue streak and threatened that if my neighbor didn't let him go, he and his buddies would return and harm the wife and children...
And it's at that point that I would have pulled the trigger.
In which case you would have committed murder.
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Old June 25, 2012, 01:10 PM   #17
rha600
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In which case you would have committed murder.
however I live in florida where if someone is standing in my house (my garage is part of my house) and I am not shooting them in the back as he's running away, I have every right to put a really big hole in him.


So no, I would not be committing murder.

Last edited by Frank Ettin; June 25, 2012 at 01:21 PM. Reason: delete chest thumping
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Old June 25, 2012, 01:30 PM   #18
Frank Ettin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rha600
...however I live in florida where if someone is standing in my house (my garage is part of my house) and I am not shooting them in the back as he's running away, I have every right to put a really big hole in him....
And that is highly doubtful under the circumstances stated.

For an explanation of Florida self defense law and why a Castle Doctrine/Stand You Ground law can not be viewed as a license to shoot or as a "get out of jail" free card see this post.
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Old June 25, 2012, 01:52 PM   #19
eastbank
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out side motion senors hooked(wireless is the way to go) up to alarms inside the house to let you know when someone or some thing is poking around.once alarmed you can decide how to react. eastbank.
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Old June 25, 2012, 02:03 PM   #20
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Posted by scrubcedar: Colorado changed the law a few years back. Had you lived in Colorado the only fact that is important is were they on your property with or without your approval. If the answer is without you may open fire no other facts needed as long as they stayed on your property.
Let no one be misled by that very inaccurate comment.

The requirements for justification in Colorado start with the fact of an unlawful entry into one's occupied dwelling, and they continue with the obligation to show a reasonable belief that the intruder (1) has committed or intends to commit another crime in addition to the unlawful entry or (2) might use force against the occupant.
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Old June 25, 2012, 02:05 PM   #21
Bartholomew Roberts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmaysob
what would the consequences be of going outside with gun HOLSTERED on your side,and holding them until the police show up
Well, one consequence is that you would give up whatever legal protections the Castle Doctrine offers you once you step outside the premises as defined by your state's law.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rha600
however I live in florida where if someone is standing in my house (my garage is part of my house) and I am not shooting them in the back as he's running away, I have every right to put a really big hole in him.
Yeah, Florida law doesn't say that.

Quote:
So no, I would not be committing murder.
It might be a murder that was hard to prove; but under Florida law, it would still be murder as you described it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scrubcedar
Had you lived in Colorado the only fact that is important is were they on your property with or without your approval. If the answer is without you may open fire no other facts needed as long as they stayed on your property.
Is there some kind of contest of the ridiculous that I missed? How are these little pieces of bad legal advice helpful in a Tactics or Training perspective?
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Old June 25, 2012, 03:28 PM   #22
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Quote:
Frank Ettin

Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by rha600

Quote:
...while he was holding the guy at shotgun point, the guy was talking up a blue streak and threatened that if my neighbor didn't let him go, he and his buddies would return and harm the wife and children...

And it's at that point that I would have pulled the trigger.
In which case you would have committed murder.
Maybe.
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Old June 25, 2012, 04:35 PM   #23
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Posted by Joe Pike: I believe in Missouri that I would have been within in my right to shoot the guy that was at my carport door since his head, shoulder and arm was in my house while he was trying to defeat the lock.
Maybe. But probably not.

The section of the black law to which you are alluding speaks of the use of deadly force against a person who unlawfully enters, remains after unlawfully entering, or attempts to unlawfully enter a dwelling, residence, or vehicle lawfully occupied by the actor. Such force is justified, with limitations.

The problem lies with what is not written in the black law. The jury instructions place additional limitations that have to do with whether the occupant had reason to believe that he or she or others were in imminent danger at the time.

The jury instructions have been approved by the Missouri Supreme Court, so it is not necessary to speculate about what would happen in the event of an appeal.

As I understand things, justification depends upon whether the homeowner is "put in fear of unlawful force", which is not defined. Imminent fear of death or serous bodily harm is not required. One of the authors of the jury instructions stated "you have to have a reasonable belief that it is necessary to defend yourself from the imminent use of unlawful force."

Lay people often say something like "in my state, the law says I can shoot someone....", "the law authorizes me to shoot....", or "I am within my rights to shoot if....". I really do not like that phraseology. The law really does not "authorize" any citizen to shoot another.

Rather, the laws are written in such a way that when one finds it immediately necessary to shoot another person for self-preservation or to prevent certain forcible felonies, he or she will be excused for having done so, depending upon the circumstances.

The laws vary among jurisdictions.

Last edited by OldMarksman; June 25, 2012 at 05:24 PM. Reason: typo
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Old June 25, 2012, 05:19 PM   #24
Joe_Pike
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Quote:
Maybe. But probably not.

The section of the black law to which you are alluding speaks of the use of deadly force against a person who unlawfully enters, remains after unlawfully entering, or attempts to unlawfully enter a dwelling, residence, or vehicle lawfully occupied by the actor. Such force is justified, with limitations.

The problem lies with what is not written in the black law. The jury instructions place additional limitations that have to do with whether the occupant had reason to believe that he or she or others were in imminent danger at the time.

The jury instructions have been approved by the Missouri Supreme Courts, so it is not necessary to speculate about what would happen in the event of an appeal.

As I understand things, justification depends upon whether the homeowner is "put in fear of unlawful force", which is not defined. Imminent fear of death or serous bodily harm is not required. One of the authors of the jury instructions stated "you have to have a reasonable belief that it is necessary to defend yourself from the imminent use of unlawful force."

Lay people often say something like "in my state, the law says I can shoot someone....", "the law authorizes me to shoot....", or "I am within my rights to shoot if....". I really do not like that phraseology. The law really does not "authorize" any citizen to shoot another.

Rather, the laws are written in such a way that when one finds it immediately necessary to shoot another person for self-preservation or to prevent certain forcible felonies, he or she will be excused for having done so, depending upon the circumstances.

The laws vary among jurisdictions.
Sometimes it seems fuzzy here in MO. When you take a CCW class they tell you that you can use the force that a "reasonable man" would use in the same situation. I feel that I am a "reasonable man" and I didn't feel that my life was in danger...at that point. There was a news story a few years ago here in the town I live in about a lady shooting someone through her sliding glass door. The guy was wounded and then arrested at the Hospital. No charges were brought against her.

I choose to err on the side of caution. I would use force if I did feel in imminent danger, but I have no desire to do so. Sometimes I feel that some folks look forward to a day where they can use deadly force.
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Old June 25, 2012, 06:24 PM   #25
output
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So your house was targeted once, and as a result you have changed absolutely nothing?

The best protection is…prevention.

You want to make your house look as uninviting as possible. Install better lighting, invest in a security system, or just buy some security stickers and signs (even if you don’t decide to install an active alarm.) and display them on your windows and lawn.

Having a plan and calm demeanor as you described are good but ultimately you want to try and avoid the use of lethal force.

Can anything be done to prevent a criminal from looking at your residence and immediately thinking “perfect” easy money!
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