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Old November 26, 2012, 05:12 PM   #1
baddarryl
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So glad I carry!

So today I come home and the door is wide open. First thing I do is draw and clear the house room by room. I finally check my room and the safe and all is well. Well this dummy left the door open all day. Brilliant eh? Yep. Still, had someone been in here I was as ready as I could be. That's a good feeling.
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Old November 26, 2012, 05:40 PM   #2
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First thing I do is draw and clear the house room by room.
Wrong answer. The first thing you do is retreat to a safe distance and contact law enforcement. If it had been a break-in, you'd have no idea how many people were in the house, what their positions were, or what they were capable of.
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Old November 26, 2012, 06:19 PM   #3
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Point well taken.
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Old November 26, 2012, 06:23 PM   #4
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+1 on not clearing your house alone...please rethink your strategy in the future. House clearing is a multi-man operation and is still dangerous in that mode.

I did the same thing...neglectfully left a door open one time while I went into town, just didn't know it at the time. When I came home I saw the door ajar, retreated to the street and positioned myself at the corner of my neighbor's property. I was carrying at the time. I called the police and waited outside while watching for activity. And by the way...I called the police directly...not via the comm center...because I knew the number...because I was an officer with that very department for several years before I "retired" to do easier work.

Even though I know how to clear a house I would never think of doing it alone unless some life or death circumstance made it necessary. Was it a bit embarrassing to have my old buddies show up to clear my house for me? Yes. Even more so when we came to the conclusion that I was the one who left the door open. But it beats being dead by a long shot!
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Old November 26, 2012, 06:25 PM   #5
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I disagree with that. I'm making sure I have a bonafide emergency before I call the police. If everyone called the police every time they left the door open the police would learn that you cry wolf and might not come so quick one time when you really need them.
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Old November 26, 2012, 06:34 PM   #6
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Sure wish you wouldn't. If you don't believe us then please seek advice from your local PD. I think they will tell you they will gladly respond.

If you ever discover you have a bona fide problem then you are right in the middle of it and it's a little late to call the police.
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Old November 26, 2012, 07:04 PM   #7
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Wrong answer. The first thing you do is retreat to a safe distance and contact law enforcement. If it had been a break-in, you'd have no idea how many people were in the house, what their positions were, or what they were capable of.
In this case, where he was unsure if there was anyone at all and potentially no one was there, wouldn't it be more problematic to falsely call the authorities and there be no one in your house?
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Old November 26, 2012, 07:21 PM   #8
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I'm making sure I have a bonafide emergency before I call the police.
While we all have to make our own choices the Police Officers I have spoken with encouraged me to call with even the slightest concern.
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Old November 26, 2012, 07:59 PM   #9
chris in va
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I came home to an open door in NOVA.

First thin I did was tell my GF and her daughter to get back to the sidewalk. Then, I called the police and asked if they'd check it out. Two officers cleared the house, then told me it was the right thing to do. They have body armor, we don't.

And what is this 'falsely call the authorities' stuff? It's not false if you don't know why the door was open.
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Old November 26, 2012, 08:01 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Edward429451
I disagree with that. I'm making sure I have a bonafide emergency before I call the police....
If there's no bona fide emergency and you go to clear your house solo, you'll be fine. If there is a bona emergency and there's an evil doer in your house and willing to engage you, you will most likely lose if you try solo clearing. The odds will be even more against you if you haven't had any training in doing that sort of thing.
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Old November 26, 2012, 08:06 PM   #11
chris in va
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Frank...so an open front door isn't an emergency?

If all my family members are with me and no friends with keys or landlords expected, there's no way I'm going in that house.
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Old November 26, 2012, 08:09 PM   #12
Frank Ettin
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Originally Posted by chris in va
Frank...so an open front door isn't an emergency?...
That's not what I wrote. I was pointing out that Edward429451's view was fundamentally specious. Personally, I'm 100% with Tom Servo.
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Old November 26, 2012, 09:05 PM   #13
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Well if it were my house and they had gotten into the safe they are now armed with 2 AR's, a shotty, and some other odds and ends I care not disclose all guns I own in a single post.

But bottom line, they are potentially far better armed than I am if they are in my house and I am coming in with only my carry gun.
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Old November 26, 2012, 09:15 PM   #14
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In this case, where he was unsure if there was anyone at all and potentially no one was there, wouldn't it be more problematic to falsely call the authorities and there be no one in your house?
Nope. The police would rather deal with a 10-minute false alarm than a homicide scene any day.

Sure, if you made a habit of calling them once a week, they might get frustrated.

If you haven't read Ayoob's In the Greatest Extreme, you should. Particularly harrowing is the third chapter, entitled "The Myth of the Citizen's Arrest."
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Old November 26, 2012, 09:44 PM   #15
baddarryl
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Thanks for the thought provoking discussion guys. For one thing, this has made me think more of taking a certified self defense course designed for those that carry. I have learned a lot here, but obviously not enough. No military or police background in my case.

That being said, I was pretty sure I was the one who left the door open. Now that I think about it, my dog slid out the side door this morning and the only way to get him is to open the door to the truck and offer a ride. So yes, I left every single door in the house unlocked! I was done prepping for the day and the last task of the morning was done so once I got him in I left. Ooops. That was in the back of my mind pretty hard. If I really thought someone was in here I might have re treated. Pretty damn sure I will after this discussion.
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Old November 26, 2012, 10:04 PM   #16
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Well if it were my house and they had gotten into the safe they are now armed with 2 AR's, a shotty, and some other odds and ends I care not disclose all guns I own in a single post.
That right there is my big issue right now in my home . If the bad guys get to my guns I would not have a chance against them . I think a couple cops would be in some trouble as well . I have all my ammo in the same room as my guns . That makes for a bad situation If the bad guy/guys get to the guns . I was talking to a friend about this the other day . I think Im going to put all the ammo except a few 12ga shells in the basement . Accses to the basement in from the outside and not from inside my house . This should help keep my gun from being used on me .
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Old November 26, 2012, 10:05 PM   #17
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"If everyone called the police every time they left the door open the police would learn that you cry wolf and might not come so quick one time when you really need them."

How the hell often do you leave your front door hanging wide open?

In the nearly 20 years I've been in my home I've left it open ONCE, and I made the mistake of going in. I was packing a Detective Special at the time, but it was still a brilliantly stupid maneuver on my part.

If you're in the habit of leaving your front door open regularly, I suggest investing in an automatic closer and an automatic latching lock.
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Old November 27, 2012, 12:27 AM   #18
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The real thing

I came home for lunch 2 weeks ago to find my front door wide open. I went inside to find we had been robbed. They broke and entered through a TINY master bath window... I'm still amazed how they managed that! Didn't get much since I have a safe, and our animals were all unharmed and accounted for. I called the PD as soon as I realized what had happened, but I searched the house anyway in the meantime. My main concern was our pets, and I wasn't afraid to go a few rounds and possibly end up in the hospital had the scumbag still been there. All I cared about was making sure my four legged kids were safe.

Word of caution from our alarm company rep.... Seems even with an alarm if you do not have glass break sensors then the crooks can still force down the top sash and crawl up and over without setting off the alarm. Also, master bed and bath are popular points of entry because they are the least protected.
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Old November 27, 2012, 12:45 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by brmfan
...I searched the house anyway in the meantime. ... I wasn't afraid to go a few rounds and possibly end up in the hospital had the scumbag still been there...
It could involve more than "going a few rounds." You might wind up permanently disabled or on a slab.

If you go looking, the bad guy, if there is one there, has a tremendous tactical advantage. You are vulnerable to ambush or, if there are more than one goblin, being flanked. Surprise greatly favors the bad guy.
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Old November 27, 2012, 12:53 AM   #20
youngunz4life
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when I was a child we got robbed. we came home from dinner and the door was wide open...my mom and dad talked about who left it open. I was scared to go in but we all did(sister and brother too). you could tell literally someone had been there seconds before....the radio was sitting with the chord wrapped up and it was like someone saw our car and left. three drug addicts were to blame and they left.

it was a mistake to go in the house. if you drew, you seemed to realize something was off...by your second post you seem to agree calling police would be better. just me, I would get that sixth sense feeling and not go in but that's me...some people many times think they left door open mistakenly. doors are left open many times during robberies...maybe hands are full, don't want to leave extra fingerprints, not sure. I know after you realize you were robbed andor intruded, 99.9% of the time the cops are called anyways and they clear the home after you mistakenly enter home letting your guard down or curiosity to take over. someone has to clear the home because otherwise horror movie time.....
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Old November 27, 2012, 01:10 AM   #21
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Frank, all valid points that crossed my mind to be completely honest. But something in my mind at the time said "Oh Hell no!" and I made the call, for better or worse. I even apologized to my wife for taking such a risk, but she knows how I'm hard wired and has been nothing but supportive and forgiving. If there is a next time, which I hope there isn't, I will definitely be more cautious.
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Old November 27, 2012, 09:00 AM   #22
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I have to say, I'm one of those that would check out my house on my own before involving the police. Obviously not the safest thing to do, but it's my house, possibly and my bonehead mistake - I'm not a big fan of inviting the government over to take care of me and my "stuff", unless it was a confirmed dire emergency.

Safety vs. Self Reliance - I tend to lean more toward self reliance.
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Old November 27, 2012, 11:50 PM   #23
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Hmmm good thoughts.

It occurs to me that I don't have the number of the local police programed into my phone. Sure there is 911, but why have a middle man? Will look that up and program in tonight.
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Old November 28, 2012, 03:26 PM   #24
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Closest 'police' here is a minimum of 15 minutes, and realistically more like 30...
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Old November 28, 2012, 04:36 PM   #25
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If you are concerned enough to pull your gun out of its holster, you should be concerned enough to pull your phone out of your pocket and call for backup. Except in cases of extreme and immediate need, law enforcement officers won’t try to clear a house by themselves, without backup. Why should you?

Also, follow the links in this post: http://www.corneredcat.com/wait-for-backup/

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