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Old December 7, 2001, 06:48 PM   #1
CMichael
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A real HD scenerio

I had sort of an embarassing situation.

At 10:15pm I had these two goons banging on my door. I peeked out the window. They yelled that they wanted to speak to my wife giving my wife's name.

They had black vests saying "agent" on them.

I went down to see what they wanted. They said they wanted to speak to my wife and that I should open door. I of course didn't open the door.

They had a tow truck. They said they that we had an outstanding loan for a 2001 car.

We don't have a 2001 car. and we never heard of the bank they represented. They showed a form with my wife's name and address.

They said they were "agents' of the bank.

We called the bank and straightened out. It turns out they made a mistake.

I am kind of embarassed because I made two big mistakes. I didn't call the police right away and I didn't take down my shotgun.

What do you guys think?

Michael
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Old December 7, 2001, 10:00 PM   #2
C.R.Sam
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You lucky. That is not an uncommon means of access for robery or worse, and stealin cars.

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Old December 8, 2001, 07:23 AM   #3
Dave McC
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Let's put it this way. If a stranger knocks on the door,we do not open it until we've established that it's legit, and even then a weapon is handy.
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Old December 8, 2001, 11:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
I of course didn't open the door.
At least you adhered to HD rule #1
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Old December 8, 2001, 12:36 PM   #5
coz
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You did good.

If it was me, they might have heard the me chamber the load in the 12 guage.

The question: If they heard you chamber the shotgun, would they have stayed at the door and persisted with their bulls__t premise?
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Old December 8, 2001, 03:52 PM   #6
Jeff White
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You did fine. Another option would have been to call the police. Repo guys always drop off a copy of the paperwork at the station and get an officer to accompany them if they think there might be trouble. Don't know if that's SOP where you live. I'm sure my chief wouldn't think very highly of people knocking on doors in the middle of the night wearing vests that say agent. A repossesion is a civil matter not a criminal one. It's settled by folks wearing coats and ties and carrying briefcases not by people trying to convince people that they are somehow cloaked with governmental authority.

If it had been me, they would have been kissing the pavement until on duty officers arrived to sort it out. I never open the door to anyone I don't know until after they have identified themselves to my satisfaction. If it had been real peace officers, they would not have minded a phone check to see if they were who they said they were.

Vests and jackets that say POLICE, AGENT, SHERIFF, SWAT, DEA, FBI can be purchased by anyone. As others have said the use of such clothing is a common method to gain entrance for home invasions and robberies.

I am curious as to who you got on the phone at the bank at that time of night? I'm pretty sure that I'd have followed it up with a call to the bank president the next day, along with a call to the police department, I'll bet they wouldn't be very happy about the AGENT vests either.

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Old December 8, 2001, 07:18 PM   #7
CMichael
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Thank you guys I appreciate your response.

Other than calling the police immediately, I wish I brought down my gun and kept it close to me just in case.

I did call the police right after the incident.

I had a bit of a concern that if they were police that if I brandished a shotgun they might shoot me.
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Old December 9, 2001, 11:35 AM   #8
Mike in VA
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A bit OT, but Jeff is right about pseudo-authority paraphenalia. There's a little Irish pub in McLean where I occasionally have lunch. There used to be a sporting goods/trophy shop a couple doors down that did the uniforms for the 'Christians In Action" intramural softball teams over at Langley, plus they also sold very official looking caps and t-shirts for the FBI, INS, DEA, et al.

If you want ot have some real fun, try going in the back door of a big restraunt with an INS ball cap and jacket on & watch how fast the kitchen clears out
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Old December 11, 2001, 03:54 PM   #9
CMichael
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Just an update the bank is going to send me a written apology.

I asked the officer if he thought I should have brought my shotgun.

He suggested that I should have taken it and kept it near me in case I needed it.

One thing that concerned me too is that they were probably armed.

If I brandished my shotgun it may have led to a shootout.

Michael
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Old December 12, 2001, 05:48 PM   #10
Ben Shepherd
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This is exactly why I have an "always" gun.
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Old December 12, 2001, 07:39 PM   #11
LASur5r
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Concern

There is some concern...of course, it is your life if you want to check out potential trouble without your weapon.

It seems that quite a few people on TFL intend to check out potential trouble with a gun in hand when it's trouble coming to the house. You've expressed concerns to the contrary.

Please think it through...if you suspect trouble in the night and you are not prepared with a weapon, how fast do you think that you can access that weapon before they kick your door down? If you want to see how fast they can knock a door down, please watch the TV program, "Cops." Then time yourself as you reach your weapon.

Usually, the BG's would have the element of surprise so you knock down a few seconds for reaction time.

Seriously, they're bringing the possibility of a gun fight to you and I ceretainly wouldn't want to show up to a gunfight without a gun. Would you?
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Old December 13, 2001, 09:23 AM   #12
CMichael
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That is a very good point Sur.

Michael
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Old December 13, 2001, 02:33 PM   #13
FScott
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I had just arrived home from work, after dark and the front door was still open as I milled about looking at the mail and letting the dogs out (mistake #1). Random stranger arrives on my front porch with a small id card on his hip and knocks on the door, I go to the door and walk onto the porch with him without positively identifying him or his purpose (mistake #2). I go to the door unarmed (mistake #3). Turns out he's trying to sell restaurant coupons, so I was lucky. It's easy to fall into bad habits when you live in a relatively safe neighborhood. This one reminded me that my guard is getting a little too low and it's time to ramp it up some.
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Old December 13, 2001, 07:34 PM   #14
Jeff White
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No one says you have to display your weapon.....

Michael,

While answering the door at low ready might be a bit much, nothing says you can't walk up to the door with your shotgun in your strong hand and concealed behind your leg. If everything is cool, just discretely step aside and put the shotgun down and no one is the wiser.

I've approached many cars on vehicle stops with my weapon drawn and held back behind my strong side thigh out of sight until I was certain of the occupants. No one was the wiser if it was just a normal stop and the occupants were acting a little strange or things didn't feel right, and if it was a legitimate threat, the weapon was already in hand.

Jeff
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Old December 18, 2001, 09:13 AM   #15
CMichael
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Jeff,

I had my shotgun in my right hand as you suggested do you think it should be racked with the safety off?

Michael
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Old December 18, 2001, 06:30 PM   #16
Jeff White
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Michael,

I'd have had a round chambered and the safety ON. If they had been trying to gain entry for a home invasion robbery you probably wouldn't have had time to chamber a round, you would probably need to employ the weapon immediately.

I would suggest going to the range and practicing bringing the shotgun into action from that position. If the shotgun is your only weapon, you may not need the practice, but it's the least frequently used by police officers and shotgun qualification at the range can be interesting. I'd recommend answering the door with the weapon you are most familiar with.

Not knowing the layout of your house I can't guess as to how you would have to employ it. Some front door/foyer areas can be pretty restrictive for the employment of a shoulder weapon. I'd go to the range and practice shooting from that semi concealed position, being careful not to cover anything on yourself or an innocent with the muzzle while bringing it to bear. I'd also include plenty of dry practice in the doorway. Ideally you should construct a reasonable replication at the range, even if it's only lining walls and doors out on the ground. It also pays to have a little plan as to what you will do if the worst does happen. That way you won't have to totally "wing" it.

Jeff
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Old December 19, 2001, 10:39 AM   #17
CMichael
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Excellent advice Jeff. Thank you.

I called the bank the next day, not that night.

Michael
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Old December 19, 2001, 02:24 PM   #18
Kirk Keller
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CMichael

Jeff has it down cold. When I answer the door and open it for strangers, I never open the door completely and while I allow room for it to swing open fully (so I don't get nailed by it if some perp kicks it or pushes it open), I also have my left hand on it and my right side concealed by the door. In my right hand, I have an HK USPc .45 locked and loaded with the safety on. When I practice at the range, I practice from low ready with safety on so flipping the safety to fire has become second nature.

Otherwise, I think you did fine. The key is that you didn't open the door for them.
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Old December 20, 2001, 02:13 PM   #19
CMichael
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I would imagine that if I brought down a shotgun and they started to break in the most important thing I should have done was backup so I can keep distance to shoot?

What do you think?
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Old December 20, 2001, 06:43 PM   #20
Kirk Keller
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Yep.

Back up quickly and bring the beast to bear.
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Old December 21, 2001, 07:31 PM   #21
Jeff White
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Reactive Distance.....

Do you have a chain or motel type latch on your door? While they aren't alll that secure, they will probably slow the break in down by a couple seconds, giving you time to back off, maybe even to a covered and concealed position.

A more high tech, but more expensive option would be to install one of those CC video units at the door. You could then "answer" the door from a safe position. They make some units that work pretty well for a couple hundred dollars.

Jeff
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