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Old May 19, 2013, 09:04 PM   #1
Blue Duck
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Home Invasion! Are you prepared? Really?

I have been reading some books lately, about true accounts of home invasions.

And there seems to be a common thread or two: most often the homeowner is caught unaware and ends up quite often getting shot, stabbed, beaten, etc and has to fight his or her way to their firearm, before finally turning the tables on the perpetrator or perpetrators and often sustaining even more injuries after shooting the invader before he realizes he has been shot, and often still runs off afterwards to be arrested at the hospital trying to receive treatment for his wounds.

Anyway, it seems like, all too often it boils down to the homeowner not having immediate access to their weapon, plus using a gun of small caliber, and or poor shooting. In my opinion I think most people buy a gun, but never really think it will happen to them, so they never prepare beyond that, much.

I live in a very low crime rural area, and don't feel like the risk is that high for us either. But as I sit here typing this out, I can see both doors of my house, and while I could probably run to the bedroom to get a gun, ahead of someone coming in the front door, if they came through the back door, they would have effectively cut me off from the bedroom before I could get there.

Have you prepared for a similar situation, or will you be caught flat footed if it ever does happen to you?

Last edited by Blue Duck; May 19, 2013 at 09:16 PM.
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:12 PM   #2
Jammer Six
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I'll be caught flat footed.

There's are many, many things I spend a lot of energy on.

Worrying about home invasions isn't one of them.
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:21 PM   #3
BigD_in_FL
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^^^^^Agreed, up until the temps broke 90 yesterday, the last few months have me with all of the windows open all day and night. I'll lock my doors at night, but that is it - and no, I am NOT out somewhere rural, just in a quiet subdivision in a quiet part of town, surrounded by elderly retirees who are always home
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:25 PM   #4
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I've lived in the red too many times outside of this country. I make an honest attempt to keep a pistol at arms reach when I am home, and a shotgun and pistol by the bedstand, but I honestly don't go out of my way. I live in a decent neighborhood, well removed from the street, lots of lights all over, I really don't lose any sleep over it. Every account of a home invasion I've read, I believe I could have stopped without really putting any more effort into my daily routine.
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:29 PM   #5
Blue Duck
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Yes, I recon a pistol at arm's reach would solve most problems.
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:43 PM   #6
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I carry at home...all the time. In fact the only time I don't carry is when prohibited by law and at work where it is against company policy. State law allows me to keep it locked in my vehicle at work so as soon as I get in I'm armed from then til bedtime when it goes on the bedside table. My two furry burgler alarms will alert me if anyone so much as touches a doorknob or window.

Carry is a lifestyle.
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:45 PM   #7
LockedBreech
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Home Invasion! Are you prepared? Really?

Meh, I'll be out of luck unless I'm close to my nightstand pistol or closet shotgun.. I carry out in the world, but if I couldn't relax at home I'd go insane.
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:46 PM   #8
rivertamer
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Re: Home Invasion! Are you prepared? Really?

I live in the Baltimore suburbs... so yes... although I am in a good quiet neighborhood.... I am on my toes.
Not much effort needed, for me, even in nice weather to be carrying my g26 in my waist band.... always have something handy.
My hobby and passion is guns, and other weapons... always working on a new weapon related project, reviewing training materials, doing drills, watching class dvds, cleaning my firearms or adding accessories.... I am sure there are others that do the same.... isn't there?
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Old May 19, 2013, 09:58 PM   #9
Terry A
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Sorry for such a long post. I got carried away!

I'm retired after 29 years 10 months in police work. I turned down every class on anything that wasn't gun or tactics related. Also spent 10 years on our SWAT team. We received great training and worked closely with other agencies, including the U.S. Army, in our training. Our entry team was often used by other departments and the guys are even better trained now than when I left a few years back.

This was a "lifestyle", not just something to do. Guns have been a huge part of my life since I was six. That's the same for alot of the men who want to be a part of this extra training, etc. My grandpap drilled saftey in us from day one and most fellas like myself (and there's a ton of them) are just real comfortable with our weapons and feel sort of naked without them.

Add in all that we know that's happened to wives or kids while "dad" was tied up and forced to watch before he too was killed and well, you sort of get the picture.

Most of the men who've stayed with this level of training and who've used these tactics and skills over and over again usually remain almost hyper-vigilant. I'm talking inside, outside, home alone or home with the family. Even while sleeping, provisions have been made to offer the best chance that they'll not be caught off guard.

So my long answer is yes, I'm very confident that I'll be ready. Part of this is having the mind set that it's GOING to happen, we just don't know WHEN. The percentage says most likely NOTHING will happen, but don't play the odds when it comes to gambling with your family.

Least anyone think I'm blowing my horn, guns and tactics were about the only thing I did well above average. And there are some guys who are just at an incredibly high level skill wise, above me and almost everybody else too! I was a bad driver, hated doing paperwork after calls and NOBODY was ever worse or dumber with computers than me. I can't play football, basketball, baseball or hockey. But I really really love guns and especially tactics. I've keep the same mind-set ever since I closed the locker for the last time.

Can I offer another observation? There are some gun enthusiasts who are MUCH better tactically than many officers who don't study, practice or, even worse, "don't think it will ever happen to them". How one trains their mind for whatever they can imagine pays off many times over in a real life event.

You guys who maybe don't work with a gun as part of your "go to work" outfit can still manage an extremely high degree of what it takes to be a winner in a gun fight. You just make up your mind that you're NOT going to lose and then you train and practice and plan, plan, plan for whatever situation you can dream up.

And one last thing....nobody should knock anyone in this thread who's not quite up to par. Every single one of us are on different levels in everything. So if someone admits to being unprepared, at least they're being honest and the fact that they're thinking about this now may prove to be just the right thing to switch them on to living more aware of "what could happen." That's alot different than being a paranoid.

I pray God's protection over all of us.
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Old May 19, 2013, 10:13 PM   #10
RBid
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Taking steps to be prepared is not inconvenient, and doesn't mean that you can't be relaxed at home.

I have thought things through, and I keep a few habits to minimize risk. Here are the types of measures I have in place. It should be obvious that I'm not making sacrifices:

1. Yappy dog. She's part of the family. As with most dogs, that means that she is protective of her humans. She's a mini dachshund, so she's not going to jack up any invaders, but she's going to make sure we know trouble is coming.

2. I carry at home. This is about as inconvenient as carrying a wallet or keys. I have a great holster, and I'm not the type who wanders around in pajamas or sweat pants all day. In other words, I'm not sacrificing comfort in any way. In fact, if I decide to go somewhere, I don't have to go through the put on/take off dance as I come or go, because it's already on me, and doesn't come off when I get back home. I'd call that a win.

3. We have sticks cut to allow the windows to slide open about 3", and screens outside of them. Anybody coming in would have to break a window, even if they were open a bit.


Convenient, comfortable, and reasonably secure. I'm very relaxed at home, or anywhere else.
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Old May 19, 2013, 10:42 PM   #11
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There is more to home defense than a weapon and maybe some of those should be considered. Even if your budget is limited there are several things that prevent you from having the time you need.

Many of them is dependent on you owning your home but many still be achieved if you rent. Apartments are a whole other beast.

If you haven't already consider......
Having a dog, bars on the windows, home Alarms (even the cheap ones that you can install on your doors/windows), trim your bushes low, replace your garage entrance door with a steel door and a deadbolt (if you have a garage), Insure your exterior is well lit, Cell Phone stays on you at all times, Hidden backup weapons, Make sure the others(extras) are not accessible to someone else (locked, Safe etc), Always have a contingency plan that includes escape routes for scenarios and is known thoroughly by your family, replace interior doors with steel doors, Store and chain lock all ladders and any item that can be used for gaining access to a second story, don't even tell your children about a planned vacation if possible, have someone to mow your grass or shovel your drive as well as get your mail for you when on vacation, Have motion censored lights in addition to regular lighting, Always have a hand free when leaving or entering your home after dark as well as key out, keep mace on your key chain, Post beware of dog and home alarm signs around the yard, install the metal heavy screen doors with bars (they are not easy to get open and delay entry) and form a neighborhood watch.

If you live in an apartment: use the extra chain lock's on your doors or have them installed if there aren't any, cut a piece of wood (like a broom stick or 1x1) and put it in your window to back up window locks, have a dog if you can, and use any of the aforementioned that will apply including cell phone and contingency plan.

Those are a few that come to mind for me and though they all may not apply i am sure some will and I use all that I can.
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Old May 19, 2013, 10:52 PM   #12
kraigwy
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I preach this in almost ever SD class I teach.

A night stand gun, an under the pillow gun, a shot gun/rifle by the bed are totally useless in most home defense situations.

Guns stashed around the house means you're planning on being in that exact spot if something happens.

Or worse, it means its available for some kid to find.

I constantly carry my 642 in my pocket, in my pocket, not in the bedroom, not in a gun safe, not in the closet, IN MY POCKET. 24/7. If I'm in bed my pants are hanging on the bedpost within reach.

I practice and teach drawing and shooting from a recliner, dinner table, couch, every thing I can think of.

Home invasions normally consist of kicking in the door and rushing it. Less then a second getting the revolver from my pocket beats 30 seconds or so of running to the bedroom to fetch a pistol/shotgun/rifle.

Besides when grand kids bring their friends over, I don't have to worry about them accidently finding a gun. They're in the safe except for the one in my pocket.
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Old May 19, 2013, 10:58 PM   #13
RBid
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"Besides when grand kids bring their friends over, I don't have to worry about them accidently finding a gun. They're in the safe except for the one in my pocket."

This is a point that I frequently make when I'm talking to people shopping for home defense weapons. I like to use the language that the firearm should be directly controlled, "each and every time, without fail, no exceptions". That means it is either in the safe, or on body. Period.

Carrying at home is the best way to make sure that you have fast access to a weapon, while also ensuring that nobody else has access to it.
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Old May 19, 2013, 11:35 PM   #14
silvrjeepr
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Home Invasion! Are you prepared? Really?

An alarm system and a yappy dog go a long way towards early warning. I'm not talking about the ADT/brinks/vivint mass sales garbage though.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:11 AM   #15
Rob228
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^^ Good point, I forgot to mention my dog. She's a red heeler that goes crazy when anyone is at the door.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:25 AM   #16
Jammer Six
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If I needed to carry at home, I'd move.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:33 AM   #17
MLeake
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I wonder if Dr Pettit thought that, before...

... or the Billings family in Florida...

Are the odds high that an invasion will occur? No.

Does a good neighborhood guarantee terrible things will never happen? Sadly, also no.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:40 AM   #18
LockedBreech
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Home Invasion! Are you prepared? Really?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MLeake View Post
I wonder if Dr Pettit thought that, before...

... or the Billings family in Florida...

Are the odds high that an invasion will occur? No.

Does a good neighborhood guarantee terrible things will never happen? Sadly, also no.
Maybe.

But we all have to make the decision about where our personal line of safety is. What precautions we consider an acceptable tradeoff of vigilance versus relaxation. Personally I think it's pretty absurd when people carry a gun, spare magazine, back-up gun, and an extra mag for the BUG, but just as many would think I'm foolhardy for only carrying 7 rounds of .380 with a reload only sometimes.

Similarly, I don't feel a need to carry at home. The argument could just as well escalate to, "Only a 5-shot revolver? Home invaders work in teams."

Like most gun stuff, no single decision is the best for everyone.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:47 AM   #19
MLeake
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LockedBreech, I agree, it is a sliding scale. My issue is with those who assume absolute safety in nice neighborhoods.

My cousin lived in a nice neighborhood when a rapist decided to attack several women there - as it was nice, but remote.

I lived in a fairly nice neighborhood when somebody kicked in my back door and burglarized the place, several years back.

A friend lived in a nice neighborhood... you get the idea.

I generally carry more as a habit pattern, and in my current neighborhood I am more likely to shoot a coyote, bobcat, or snake than a human assailant. But I don't really think twice about it, the gun just goes on as part of getting dressed.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:54 AM   #20
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I think once a perpetrator gets up to an unreinforced door or window without arousing any attention, the odds are against the homeowner, regardless of training or mindset.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:57 AM   #21
Terry A
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Quote:
Today, 01:33 AM #17
MLeake
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Join Date: November 15, 2007
Location: Outside KC, MO
Posts: 9,642 I wonder if Dr Pettit thought that, before...

... or the Billings family in Florida...

Are the odds high that an invasion will occur? No.

Does a good neighborhood guarantee terrible things will never happen? Sadly, also no.
This is a very good post.

You know, really how hard is it to have a handgun on you all day? People carry their cell phones everywhere they go, even in the bathroom! People carry a wallet or wear a watch.
Lots of us would feel near naked without a pistol on or right beside us.

Some people would be shocked to know how many people really carry all day, every day. It's no big deal and not that hard.

We're very involved in our local church. I've taken so many people shooting over the years that, believe this or not, theres about 30 people who have permits to carry concealed and do, even in church. The same with family members and friends. So many were introduced to shooting the right way. And now, there's that many more responsible gun owners who feel alot more secure and good about their chances of being able to protect others.
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Old May 20, 2013, 12:59 AM   #22
MLeake
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(Edit: Response to post # 20) True, but do you see an advantage to being unarmed as well as surprised?

This is why layered security is a good idea. Good lighting, no good hiding spaces around the house, good locks and doors; maybe an alarm system; etc.

I have a pretty effective, furry and fanged alarm system, so nothing ever seems to get close to the house without at least some accompanying noise.
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Old May 20, 2013, 04:31 AM   #23
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I don't have a pistol within arms reach or anything but I live in an econ apartment that allows only one way in and one way out safely. I have measures to slow anyone short of using C4 from gaining access. So by the time that anyone has made it inside my house both my wife and I are aware, armed and have police on the way.
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Old May 20, 2013, 07:19 AM   #24
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No, due to Canadian laws all my firearms are in a safe.
To be perfectly honest even if it were legal they would probably still be in the safe.
I live in the same house I grew up in and have all the same neighbours.
I feel that my home is my sanctuary.
I even leave a window open so my cat can come and go without waking me up at 4:00AM.
Statistically in Canada home invasions are incredibly rare if you are not a drug dealer.
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Old May 20, 2013, 09:02 AM   #25
Hiker 1
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A surprising number of home invasions have occurred when the victims opened the door for strangers!

That is shocking to me. Unless it's a kid raising funds for Girl Scouts or Boy Scouts, I don't open the door for strangers at any time of day.

When we moved into our new home in a very nice semi-rural area, a neighbor came by to introduce himself. I let him know that the alarm company was coming and he laughed - "Oh, you don't need to worry about that. Nothing ever happens here!" Yes, he said those words.

Some good posts here. I'd say I'm as prepared as possible. I work from home and keep a G23 in easy access, but I have made the determination that if I do get caught flat-footed, I'm going out using whatever is at hand - pool cue, shovel, kitchen knife, whatever. I'm not going to be the guy who gets tied up and watches my family get brutalized.
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