Well, goody for you that you are an ex LEO. Not everyone is and not everyone has that kind of training. Do you honestly think that the average person is trained to react to a break in??? No, of course you don't - but you are more than happy to say that they should have acted this way or that way even though you were NO WHERE near them. Just because you were a LEO doesn't mean you have any more right to judge than anyone else.
And again, I've been told over and over not to announce that I have a weapon. If you want to, go ahead. I'm not gonna. You break down doors coming for me, you're going to die by my hand. Sucks, but there you go.
Civilians can get the exact same training, more or less, from training providers. Atlanta, like many other urban areas in the South, has several such as Atlanta Firearms Training, which offers exactly the type of scenario-based live-fire exercises that I partook in. These were just two rubes who went out and bought a handgun or two thinking it would keep them safe. They didn't prepare for any home invasions and the wife, like the husband, only had a little bit of shooting time at the range under her belt. If you buy a gun for defensive purposes, you have to learn how to use it properly and efficiently in a life or death situation or you keep it unloaded and safe.
So you really think he wasn't planning to do her harm??? That guy needed to die.
I can't say he wasn't any more than you can say that he did intend to harm her. According to the police reports, she was hiding in the attic by the time he entered the home and didn't know she was there until he came upon her. Based on those reports, he probably heard her rumbling around in the crawlspace with the kids once he broke through the bedroom door after having gone through the rest of the house looking for stuff, went to check it out by popping his head through the crawlspace door, and she emptied the gun into his face as soon as he was visible per her husband's instructions. That seems to be what happened.
Not to be flippant, but assuming they were attempting to break through the front door and I was on the first floor, I would have grabbed my phone and dialed 911 on speaker and give them a quick sitrep while obtaining my handgun from it's case in my bedroom, then I would proceed to the foyer, stopping within 20 feet of my front door, where the intersection of the hallway and the entrance to my kitchen are. Then I would loudly shout twice in my big boy voice of authority - the same one I often use at the dog park to put people in line - while covering the doorway that I was armed and that the police are on their way. If the intruder then got the door open, I would yell "Stop! I am armed!". If he continued to advance into my home after that, I would shoot him once in the chest and then again in the stomach if he did not halt or retreat due to the first wound. If he continued to move forward in an aggressive manner towards me after being shot twice, I would unload another round into his upper body, probably causing fatal damage to his lungs at that point, and hope that he has the common sense to back off and stay down when I am obviously armed. If he didn't, then my property value is going to go down and I'll have to replace my hardwood floors that I just spent loads of money on having installed as well as my handgun which would be confiscated by the police as evidence in a homicide. First-world problems from a third-world solution but that's how you handle an intruder. I have a dog who barks aggressively at any potential intruders on his domain, so I most likely wouldn't have to do anything because he would probably scare them off, but if he didn't, it would go something like how I outlined above. If the intruder happened to be deaf or didn't speak English, well, shit happens. I work from home, more often than not, and I am trained to deal with such situations having been an LEO, so I can be judgemental and give my say because I have credibility to do so.
Lex ... That's a poor course of action for me and likely most... My reasons:
You assume there's only one intruder.
You locate yourself to person/s unknown.
Calling 911 delays obtaining your weapon and takes your attention from the threat.
You stop firing while the attack is continuing. I fire until the threat stops.
You must live in a jurisdiction ruled by the liberal elite. My weapon would be taken and returned to me after the investigation in your scenario. It's not homicide to defend yourself. I am a legal gun owner not a convicted felon.
She didn't confront the intruder at all. She hid in the attic and then wildly shot him when he came across her and the kids after opening the attic door. If you think that means she confronted him from a position of strength than you must live in a fantasy land. The woman had no home defense training and no real shooting skills and she was scared out of her mind. All of that is clear as day from listening to the 911 call where her husband had to tell her what to do. Confronting the intruder from a position of strength means she would have identified herself with the gun pointed at him when he came through the front door. He had nothing but a crowbar, so he would have been out of there had she "confronted him" and told him that the police were on their way. Instead of doing that, she ran and hid in the attic with her gun while on a conference call with her husband and 911. She got lucky and there's nothing more to it.
Perhaps she did get lucky. Perhaps she didn't act in a coldly rational fashion. Perhaps the didn't "confront" the intruder. Even if all this is true the question becomes "so what?"
Confrontation? Not required. Note that the intruder pursued through multiple rooms and doors. He was armed with a deadly weapon (a crowbar wielded with force can break up a concrete block; it's not a "nothing" weapon). The idea that a verbal warning as he crashed through the last door would somehow have sent him running in terror is utterly at odds with the facts.
Should she have called 911 instead of her husband? Yes. But that just says she was inexperienced and uncertain. Even if she "panicked" it just means she did what a very large percentage of the population would have done.
Does she need to work on her marksmanship skills? Probably so.
So she got lucky? So what? There are lessons to be learned in this event. But none of them are "a verbal warning will surely send the intruder away."
Lex, we just disagree. Neither of us were there. I know what I'd do. You know what you'd do. She did what made her and her kids safe. I guess you can judge on your past frame of reference, but you were not there.
And screw him begging for her to stop. Umm, don't break into my house, asshole! Then you don't get shot.
And screw him begging for her to stop. Umm, don't break into my house, asshole! Then you don't get shot.
Out where I live, everyone has a firearm of some sort. We have zero crime. No need to wait for LE to show up either. The only ones we worry about are the city folk who come out to shoot gophers in the hay fields. A couple of their kids are too wild for us. We've asked them to move on down around to the next section of land.
Out here, you can walk into a cafe with your sidearm and no blinks an eye. Rifle in the grocery store?? Okie dokie.
I'm assuming you can pass such after action judgment on this woman's response to a life threatening situation because you have been in the exact same situation yourself? Tell us about the time you had to protect yourself and your children from an armed intruder. Tell us how you did it better. I don't care how many simulated training scenarios you may have completed, have you shot anyone in defense of your own life?
Originally Posted by LexInVA
I know because the intruder didn't know they were there. In situations where someone is home and that person makes it known that they are there and have called the police/are armed, daytime intruders always run in the other direction when they find out that someone knows they are there and has likely seen them because they can't take the chance that the police aren't already on their way or that they could get shot at. It's Career Criminal Common Sense. You don't take the big risk unless there's a big payoff. The woman was stupid enough to run around locking doors before she even called for help and she wasn't even smart enough to call the police for help. Instead, she called her dopey husband at work and he called 911 on his desk phone, losing precious time in addition to the time she lost while running scared around the house. She's not a hero, she's an idiot who got lucky. Very lucky.
You made a light joke about my bear gun. That gun lives next to me at night, not under my pillow but by the time the dogs notice someone around it's in my hands. My 12 year old and my 15 year old know where it is and are very adept at shooting it.
If someone crosses my doorstep and doesn't identify themselves as harmless they're getting all the dogs and both barrels.
I can't believe you call this lady an idiot. Chivalry is deader than a door nail, apparently.
Just discussed this with DH who has a long history of a) military combat b) training of various military types for combat c) training of police.
His response is the couple had a plan where she retreated to the crawlspace with kids and contacted her hubby. So far so good. Now if intruder only wanted to take a few things, he had the choice to do so. Instead he chose to search the house until he found her and kids.
Now as DH noted - 1 in 5 military types take an aimed shot. Meaning the other 4 either shoot in the general direction or do not shoot at all. In his experience 'we' as a society train our kids not to harm others. Then that kid joins the service and is told to "kill". There are many who even when faced with their own demise are reluctant to over ride previous training and shoot the other person in order to live.
Now the mother, faced with the intruder breaking into the crawl space had two choices: tell him to leave and hope that he complies or shoot. As he was the agressor, after all he could have left when he heard that someone else was in the house or taken a few valuables and left. Instead he chose to track down whoever was in the house, THE HOUSE HE ENTERED WITHOUT PERMISSION, armed with a crowbar.
Now her DH was on the phone with 911 - good. He also was coaching his wife and gave her permission to protect herself and their children. So she shot the intruder, not guest, not poor lost soul, but intruder.
His actions were agressive from the beginning. Like most bullies, he didn't expect anyone to fight back.
FYI - Years ago DH had a similar plan for his ex and their 2 children. A place was setup in the attic with barred door, telephone extension (pre cell phone days) and weapons. One of which was booby-trapped with pepper spray. An intruder broke in one day when everyone was away, found the hiding spot and triggered the pepper-spray. One of his next door neighbors called DH to let him know someone was sitting on the front porch rubbing his eyes and some sort of mist was coming out of the house. DH called the cops who met him at their house and took the guy in. The intruder received about 90 days, but the word went out in the community that their house was booby-trapped and while neighbors had problems they never did.
DH and I will review our plans for situations over the coming weeks. . . .
"Never do anything that you have to explain twice to the paramedics."
Courtesy my cousin Tim