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Old December 4, 2016, 05:10 PM   #1
BearFL
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A knock on the door in the night...

I've never been one to open my door to anyone I don't recognize.
Massad Ayoob has a good video about this topic on YouTube.
In my area, I have read of people being attacked after opening their door to someone in broad daylight. (Recently)

Friday night, for the 2nd time in 2 nights, someone knocked on my door after dark. What really concerned me is this time they were blocking my peep hole with their thumb or something. I have heard where criminals have used this tactic to get people to open their doors.

Not that I actually expected them to arrive in time to help but I dialed 911 while I cradled my trusty all metal Ruger 9mm. To my dismay, the dispatcher didn't see any sense of urgency and told me to call the non-emergency number next time! I politely told her that I felt otherwise.

Anyway, I waited about 10 minutes and nothing transpired.
I eventually ordered a pizza and, with my concealed carry, went off to pick up the pizza. As I was leaving I saw the cops arriving.
I picked up my pizza and when I returned home they were parked in front of my house. They were very cool and I thanked them for coming out.
They felt my use of the 911 system was appropriate and invited me to "call anytime".
I have since filed a complaint about the dispatcher.
I think she needs additional training.

All I can say is thank goodness we are allowed to have guns in our country.
It turns what could have been a frightening situation into a "walk in the park".

Any feedback is welcome.
Also, if you have any suggestions for affordable video intercom systems, I'm all ears.
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Old December 4, 2016, 05:22 PM   #2
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As well as calling 911, I think a camera over the entrance would be warranted.

Glad you have a "piece" at your disposal for times like those.

Mine is always either on me or within hands reach.

I never answer a call to the entrance (night or day) without a handgun on me.
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Old December 4, 2016, 05:28 PM   #3
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I generally support a persons gut instinct when it comes to danger. If you felt like something bad was going on, you are probably right. I never never answer the door to a stranger, period. I don't like to tell people when they should and shouldn't use the 911 system.. if you felt that strongly about it, I wont criticize.
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Old December 4, 2016, 06:08 PM   #4
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Friday night, for the 2nd time in 2 nights, someone knocked on my door after dark. What really concerned me is this time they were blocking my peep hole with their thumb or something. I have heard where criminals have used this tactic to get people to open their doors.
That doesn't make sense to me, that would make me and i think most people less likely to open the door. I would have no hesitation ringing the police if i thought there was a threat better safe than sorry, and i would expect quick police response.
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Old December 4, 2016, 06:42 PM   #5
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Makes one wonder, what if you called the police to report a burglary, then immediately called the fire department to report a fire, then immediately call Domino's and ordered pizza delivered, who would win the race? My bet would be on the fire department, but I might lose to the pizza delivery. When I reported the burglary of some of the cars at our house a few years ago, the Sheriff's department refused to send anyone and didn't care to see my neighbor's security camera recording that showed who did it. "Come down and fill out a report."
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Old December 4, 2016, 06:46 PM   #6
g.willikers
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The police showing up at your door can have its dangers, too.
Be sure you know the safe procedures when they do arrive.
It would be a shame if you were mistaken for the intruder.
Just a thought.
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Old December 4, 2016, 07:02 PM   #7
Old Bill Dibble
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I'm not sure what the dispatcher did wrong.

No crime was being committed to the best of my knowledge.


Quote:
Anyway, I waited about 10 minutes and nothing transpired.
I eventually ordered a pizza and, with my concealed carry, went off to pick up the pizza. As I was leaving I saw the cops arriving.
So the cops showed up, nothing happened and you want to complain about it? I must be missing something here can you explain further?
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Old December 4, 2016, 08:01 PM   #8
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Bill whether the police showed or not, do you really think the response of the dispatcher was appropriate? Under the circumstances she should have processed the call, and let a real law enforcement officer determine the response.

That "no crime was being committed" is a pretty cavalier response by you. Yes, things turned out OK in this situation, but under the stated circumstances it seems like a legitimate request for help.

The OP has a legitimate complaint. I would go talk to the supervising officer in person the next business day. My guess is proper procedure was not followed. I don't think it needs to go beyond that, unless training was needed at that level too.
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Old December 4, 2016, 09:37 PM   #9
MarkGlazer
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Bill, the 911 operator failed in her duties. If someone is blocking the peephole, that's not a red flag for you? That's a warning of an imminent attack for me. Who covers a peephole and why? At night especially? There can be only one answer.

Where I live, the PD tells you to call them for ANYTHING that is out of the norm, don't hesitate. BearFL did the right thing. I am surprised that he left the house, simply not knowing if they might return. Thankfully nothing came of it.
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Old December 4, 2016, 10:48 PM   #10
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I've told this story before. My next door neighbor had someone knock on his door after midnight. He armed himself and went to a window where he could see the person at his door without being observed himself. The person wasn't wearing any sort of uniform and was not known to the homeowner so he decided not to answer the door.

After waiting awhile, the person turned and left, and as he did, a previously undetected person came out of hiding and joined him as he walked away.

I've often wondered what would have happened had he opened the door.
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Old December 4, 2016, 11:25 PM   #11
kilimanjaro
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So, you gave the cops a slice of pizza, or what?
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Old December 4, 2016, 11:41 PM   #12
shafter
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So you think there's going to be a home invasion so you leave to go get pizza ten minutes after calling 911? Hmmm.
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Old December 5, 2016, 01:06 AM   #13
Old Bill Dibble
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Quote:
So you think there's going to be a home invasion so you leave to go get pizza ten minutes after calling 911? Hmmm.
That is kind of where I was.

Quote:
Bill whether the police showed or not, do you really think the response of the dispatcher was appropriate?
Yes, the police were dispatched. More than ten minutes seems like a long time to me. But I can tell you in 2016 no department is going to allow their officers to run code to such a call. So if I were him I'd check local records on response times.

Quote:
Who covers a peephole and why? At night especially? There can be only one answer.
Surprise Party? Pissed off neighbor who keeps coming over to complain about his cat? I can think of a lot of reasons. Looking at it from the other side I can tell you calls like this are frequent and nearly always nothing. The police should still go to check it out though. Cuz you never know.
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Old December 5, 2016, 07:26 AM   #14
45_auto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bearfl
Friday night, for the 2nd time in 2 nights, someone knocked on my door after dark. What really concerned me is this time they were blocking my peep hole with their thumb or something.
Who was it the first time it happened when the peephole wasn't blocked? Was it someone you knew?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Bill Dribble
Looking at it from the other side I can tell you calls like this are frequent and nearly always nothing. The police should still go to check it out though. Cuz you never know.
Yep. How many times, and for what reasons, has the OP called 911 lately? How many units did the dispatcher have available at the time? What kind of calls were they out in response to when the OP's call came in?

I don't know of ANY law enforcement jurisdiction where someone ringing the doorbell of an adult with the peephole blocked would warrant any urgency in response. The next available unit with no other calls would be dispatched.

Dispatcher and police response seems perfectly fine to me. Seems to me that the dispatcher gave the OP good advice. If it wasn't an emergency, why tie up the emergency number? What did he expect the cops to do if they had showed up while someone was standing there ringing his doorbell with their finger over the peephole?

Even if the doorbell ringer didn't have a legitimate excuse, he would have just told the cops that friends of his used to live there and he wanted to surprise them or some such crap. Cops would have told him to go away, that would be the end of it. OP achieved the same result by being prepared, but not opening the door.

If it was a real emergency, I would expect the dispatchers response to be totally different.

Last edited by 45_auto; December 5, 2016 at 07:33 AM.
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Old December 5, 2016, 07:30 AM   #15
Don P
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That doesn't make sense to me, that would make me and i think most people less likely to open the door.
Nobody ever said that the criminal element were the brightest light bulbs in the box.
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Old December 5, 2016, 12:11 PM   #16
besafe2
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In my city this is always a 911 call. I would've done same thing.
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Old December 5, 2016, 01:09 PM   #17
Lohman446
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I think some of you guys are paranoid. That said even I don't open my door without having a pistol in my hand (generally behind my leg).
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Old December 5, 2016, 01:31 PM   #18
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That said even I don't open my door without having a pistol in my hand (generally behind my leg).
That has been discussed here a number of times. Personally, I think it is a very poor idea,

Should the caller turn out to be a violent criminal actor, the defender's ability to employ the pistol timely and effectively to defend himself would be questionable at best. That's a risky strategy.

Should the caller turn out to be innocent, which is the more likely possibility, the resident is left with gun in hand and the need to do something with it. That could prove embarrassing--or risky.

It is a much better idea to open a door only after ascertaining that the caller does not present a threat.

Cameras have been suggested. I have them.
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Old December 6, 2016, 08:40 AM   #19
dannyb
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I think that this was the equivalent of a "prowler" call; the 911 dispatcher is wrong to say it should go to the nonemergency number. The police may prioritize the response any way they need to, but it should not be up to the dispatcher to determine priority in a case like this. If the complaint were about an errant cat or a dog pooping on the front lawn, that's not 911 territory.
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Old December 6, 2016, 08:59 AM   #20
shafter
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If you really think someone is on your front porch blocking your peep hole because they're about to break in because there has been a rash of similar occurrences recently, then it isn't unreasonable to call 911. However, it's the OP's actions immediately after by leaving to go get pizza that leads me to believe he wasn't just making poor tactical decisions. I don't believe he was taking his concern seriously. If you aren't serious then don't call 911.
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Old December 6, 2016, 09:32 AM   #21
g.willikers
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That said even I don't open my door without having a pistol in my hand (generally behind my leg).
Must make it difficult to get packages delivered to the front door.
Maybe not a good idea, especially at Christmas time.
But seriously, it's tacticool if there's a window overlooking the front door.
Or maybe a mirror mounted outside that shows who's there.
Lots of ways to avoid scaring the paper boy on his collection rounds.
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Old December 7, 2016, 11:02 AM   #22
Skans
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I never even come to the door if someone knocks and I don't expect them, daytime or otherwise. People I want to visit with just don't show up unannounced. Salesman or crook - they all get the same treatment. If the knock is at night, then I get my gun and have a way of peeking out of one of the windows without being noticed.
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Old December 7, 2016, 12:05 PM   #23
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I never even come to the door if someone knocks and I don't expect them, daytime or otherwise. People I want to visit with just don't show up unannounced. Salesman or crook - they all get the same treatment. If the knock is at night, then I get my gun and have a way of peeking out of one of the windows without being noticed.
That won't work in the deep mountains in hillbilly country. We didn't have telephones until well after most of the country had them. It was a matter of availability and sometimes cost. We had no way of warning anyone that we were coming and just showed up at friends and relatives homes. We were always welcomed and they always insisted on feeding us. We developed our habits early and we sometimes still show up unannounced. Most of us have never met a stranger and we answer the door to everyone. It's just a southern mountain thing we do.
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Old December 7, 2016, 12:25 PM   #24
RaySendero
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BearFL, Junior Member, Join Date: October 27, 2016, Posts: 2, wrote:

A knock on the door in the night...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I've never been one.....

I see where you started 2 threads with your first 2 posts.

Could you introduce yourself please?
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Old December 8, 2016, 11:09 AM   #25
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I see where you started 2 threads with your first 2 posts.
And, as of this writing, nothing since.

The whole idea of being alarmed enough to call 911 and then going out to pick up a pizza a few minutes later, before LEOs even arrived, sounded a little odd to begin with.

I don't feel obligated to open a door to anyone who knocks, and I think a call to 911 for a suspected prowler is a reasonable response. I'm a little unsure what to make of the details of the posted story, though.
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