A Home Invasion Lesson

A Home Invasion Lesson

A Home Invasion Lesson

Are you prepared to handle a home invasion?

The truth is, many people aren’t, and luckily, the gentleman you’re about to hear from didn’t have to find out the hard way. Here’s the email he sent me: (We’ll call him “C” as he asked me not to reveal his name.)

“Jason, here is a story for you about being prepared but not being ready for a home invader. The other night while going to sleep my family and I were startled by a bunch of loud noises coming from our main level, these were no ordinary noises and sounded like someone was already in the house or coming thru a window.

Thus I jump up grab my FN 9mm and head downstairs. Luckily, there was no home invader and it was my dog with his collar stuck on his cage, he was trying to get loose and in the process his cage and food/water bowl were being kicked around and making all the noise.

Now to get to the point, I was prepared by having a weapon, but I was not ready because it was locked, unloaded, and sitting in its case in the closet.

The process of me getting the case out of the closet, key, unlocking the lock, and loading a magazine (yes the magazine was full with bullets ready to go) probably added 10-20 seconds to me being ready to defend my family. If this was a real home invader he may have made it upstairs and my weapon rendered useless as it was not ready fast enough.

With 3 children aged 15,13, and 5, and a wife who was not too happy that a gun was in the house, I thought this to be best solution for storing the gun. She wanted me to keep it in the attic!!

Well after this realistic scare, I will be getting a Glock 19 (I fumbled with my safety a little while heading down the stairs so no more of that) and a wall safe within 2-3 feet of my side of the bed so the gun is locked, loaded, ready, and within easy reach.

I also now have a wife that is totally on board with having the gun and even a backup for her just in case I don’t come back up the stairs!

I also have a few concerns and would like your feedback.

I keep the gun upstairs in the bedroom. There are two worst-case scenarios that could happen to our family:

1. A home invasion occurs when I am not home, no one has access to the gun. I keep the lock key with me. Although I believe my teenagers/wife can use it properly in time of need (I have taken them to the range), I still get concerned that my teenagers (both boys) may want to show it off to friends and I don’t want an accident. My dad had a couple of guns and I showed them once or twice to friends, I made sure they were unloaded/safe but I still did it. Should I give the safe codes/access to the rest of the family? What is your opinion?

(Answer from Jason) The only people who have the combos to my guns are my wife and I. When it comes to kids, it all depends on their maturity level and I can’t give you that answer. It’s up to each parent to decide when their children are responsible to have the combos to the safes. And again, I have no idea when that will be. It may be 15, 18, or never.

2. I used to live in Miami where home invasions happened a lot and at all times of the day. Luckily, I live where they happen infrequently.  But, if I am sitting on the couch watching a game and a couple of thugs kick in my front door, I have no access to my gun upstairs. What is your suggestion with keeping a gun on the main level or every level of the house?

(Answer from Jason) First, I highly recommended getting a rapid-access safe. I like the Gun Vault line of safes. You need to be able to access your gun in 3 seconds or less. Personally, I keep a gun on every level of my house and each one is in a rapid access safe. As you pointed out, if somebody breaks in and your gun is two floors away from you then it won’t do you much good.

The bottom line is, “C” was very lucky it wasn’t a home intruder. I’ve had many students tell me horrible home invasion stories, which is why they ended up in one of my courses.

Also, I highly recommend doing a “dry run home invasion scenario.” For instance, while lying in bed tonight, pretend you hear your door getting kicked in. How quickly can you access your gun and your flashlight? Is there anything you realize such as your nightstand is too far away or you need a different flashlight?

I’ve done these scenarios many times and they’re well worth it, so if you don’t do it tonight, please do it this week.

,

  • James Bonanno

    Good points in this article. Indeed, being prepared and actually ready,can be very different things. I create scenerio’s at night and actually move around the safe room and other areas of my home with a blue gun and separate light. Many factors do come in to play for safe storing of defensive firearms, based on your kids ages and maturity. The “3 second” rule is a good one, but can be tough to maintain at all times. I carry concealed at home for that reason. Stay safe. Jim….out.

    • ideaman

      The NRA sells a bedside concealment called “Holster-Mate”. I have a gap between the headboard and mattress. Slide the plate under the mattress.. While lying in bed you can easily reach down and draw the weapon and no one can see it.

  • Matt

    My feedback, first, a quick access safe is a must, I like the electronic push button types. I have a couple of laptops with the fingerprint scanners and they don’t work well enough for for me to trust a similar technology under stressful situations. Second practice running the combination until it’s automatic and you can open it first time, every time, in the dark, half asleep.

    With regards to a second gun, I keep one in the kitchen, on top of a cabinet, unfortunately I am the only one in the house tall enough to reach it without a stool, I am struggling with this now. I have a little NAA .32 guardian that I often carry in my pocket around the house, it’s very small and unobtrusive, and while .32 isn’t exactly a man stopper, I figure it’ll give me time to get to something more substantial.

    Finally, keep your doors closed and locked. When I was I kid we didn’t bother locking the doors at night half the time. But that was 40 years ago and that world is gone. Even though I live in a rural area we’re still beset with tweakers looking for something to steal to pay for their next fix. These addlepated idiots will walk into your house or garage in the middle of the day, while you are home. I figure a locked door is a discouragement and if that’s not enough the time it takes them to break through it will at least give me the opportunity to prepare an appropriate welcome.

    • Cathy McDowell

      Not a man stopper? Really? Come on over and I’ll see if my NAA 22 magnum is working properly.
      Do you get my point? All guns can be fatal if fired in the proper parts of the body. If fired anywhere, it’s gonna hurt.

      • Jarhead6541

        You may use whatever caliber you feel comfortable with, Cathy. However, as a former military ordnance instructor, I would not recommend anything under 9mm for home defense. For CC, nothing lower than a .380. I own several 22 mags and a heavy jacket could stop the mag round.

        • Cathy McDowell

          Really? I doubt that. Military or not! heavy jackets aren’t worn here anyway.
          I’m not concerned. I’ve seen what it can do!
          I’m a spot on target hitter. An intruder comes here and I pop ’em once in the chest and he/she is down.
          We also have the 38 but I can’t pull it. I do not want an automatic.
          Unhideable!

          • Ever Ready

            Cathy, .22 Mag is an effective weapon, but the hollow points do tend to clog through clothing, essentially preventing expansion. Hornady Critical Defense rounds solve that problem with an insert that forces expansion of the round on contact, even with soft clothing or leather. Use those rounds and you’ll improve your chances a great deal. Very good penetration and expansion will stop anyone, particularly if you get at least two CM hits.

          • Cathy McDowell

            I’m happy with the 22 mag and I have the hornady critical’s. I’m not concerned at all.
            If I saw a woman holding a gun I’d high tail it. LOL
            Women are nuts ya know.

          • John K

            Cathy, I am a retired federal agent, former cop, deputy US marshal and a few other law enforcement positions. I was also an NRA-certified law enforcement firearms instructor. Your confidence in your abilities is misplaced. That is not a put-down, just a reflection of the difference between shooting at a range and shooting when the flight or fight adrenaline dump happens.

            I served with another agent who had come to our agency after being a security poiliceman with the US Air Force (he was qualified as an experrt in all firearms from revolvers thr .50 caliber machinegun and the Bureau of Prison SWAT team ( expert with pistols, shotguns and rifles).His range scores were always 298-300 out of a possible score of 300.

            To get him to understand the reality of an actual shootout, I had him come to the range one morning and started screaming at him and cursing, which I never did. His first string of fire scored at 110, which was not a passing score. I had him fire another string and with his automatic adjustment to his flight or fight reaction he was able to score 160, which was just barely passing.

            The point of this story…and the findings of many officer involved shootings is that no of us are a good as we think when the chips are down. Frequent practice and realistic expectations goes a long way towards making sure we walk away from a gun-related confrontation.

          • Cathy McDowell

            Thanks for your ex military opinion.
            However — I am a woman who wears snug clothing.
            I carry my NAA because I can conceal it. It is a very nice little gun that I can handle with ease.
            I am going to invite you to come to my house and attempt a break in during the day when I am there alone.
            I will use my 22 magnum to blow your brains all over my car port.
            Are you willing to play my little exercise?
            My POINT is, it’s a GUN! It’s always loaded and it has the ability to kill.

          • Preacher

            I purchased an excellent, and very graphic, informative DVD about shooting victims, and ballistics. Its amazing, what the body can withstand ! And victims meaning bad guys, good guys, and suicide attempts. Successful ones, and not so successful ones. The conclusion in a nut shell. A well place round trumps several non well placed rounds. As a nurse, I have to agree. A 22 to the temple, game over, pack up and go home. Two to a leg by a larger round, unless you hit the femoral artery, you can now run away, but the bad guy is not out of the fight. It takes time to bleed out. To your defense, you are right, ANY gun kill.

            Also, the second main point the video concludes is the fact that a larger round means bigger hole. Bullets don’t always deform in the body as advertised. They bounce off bones. while others just seem to stop within the body cavity, while another might keep going out through the other side.

            My personal conclusion………………nobody is immune to lead poisoning, if you catch my drift.

        • tricolordad

          I was also military. I served 6 tours in GWOT. I will tell you this from experience, and from a study conducted by the FBI, that 9mm often requires between 4 and 6 shots to stop an attack, and that .22lr, which is and historically has been the most commonly owned and used caliber in home defense situations, requires only 1.3 shots to stop the attack. The myth that bigger is better is often rehashed and caliber warriors such as you often gurgle out that 9mm NATO (9×19) is sufficient and that 9mm Makarov, also known as .380 auto (9×18), literally, 1mm shorter, will figuratively bounce off the attacker and get you killed. You “experts” also discount .40 S&W (10×22) which is a bigger and longer slug and cartridge, even though you use that “bigger is better” garbage to argue in favor of your opinion. This is complete and utter BS. If you doubt me, as Cathy says, feel free to invade my home. I will do her one better and stop you dead in your tracks with .22 short.

          • Jarhead6541

            Discount the .40 S&W? Check my first post, Killer, it’s what I carry. Not a “bigger is better” guy, never was. If you feel a need to glorify the .22, go for it. You’re not gonna get a big following, but you are allowed your opinion, as am I.

            Now, why would I invade your home? Is that something your accustomed to? Sorry, don’t need your stuff. Also don’t need your angry, threatening response. I prefer to stay clear of your kind, for obvious reasons.

  • I’m a vet

    Hello Jason,
    This the Story that should be making National News, on ( the means and ways to safeguard, and possess weapons .) Regarding the 2nd Amendment , not attacking Men and Women who by Law , have been vetted and have the where-with-all to inform train and protect their own family.
    I commend C, for taking a pro-active safe and Sane logical thought process, to this scenario, So much logic that C has allowed his wife to understand the importance of Home security.
    Gone are the days when you could go to sleep with the doors unlocked, and yes I was apart of that generation.
    Thanks for the story. I’m a vet

  • Cathy McDowell

    It’s amazing how people can carry a gun to help protect them when it’s unloaded.

    We have a 38 special loaded at all times next to the bed.

    My 22 magnum is always loaded and within reach.

    Why have a gun locked in a cabinet or unloaded.

    Are we suppose to say, “Hey, Give me a second while I load my pistol?”

    I mean seriously! We have a carry permit for a reason.

    I recently asked my sister in law who just got her permit too if she was packing heat.
    Se said, “No, I don’t think I’ll need it.”
    Do we ever think we’ll need it? Who’s to say when a punk tries to rob us etc.
    Happens all the time in broad daylight in store parking lots!

    • tricolordad

      I asked my FIL that same question, he does that same thing. I guess he doesn’t value his family’s safety like I do. He still thinks that he can grapple with a guy. Must be all the time he spent in submarines…ignorance is bliss to some.

      • Tre’

        It has nothing to do with the time spent in submarines. I was on subs for over twenty years, and I always carry. I had some of my best training while serving on subs. I was the range master as well as the small arms instructor for the ship. I was trained by former Marine snipers and some Navy SEAL friends of mine. So, before you go throwing the igonrance bomb around, have all of your facts straight about what goes on there. My wife and both of my kids are trained with guns and know how to react in different situations. Gun protection is a personal choice, not a specified group choice.

        • tricolordad

          Only in the bubbleheads do 42 men go down and 21 couples come back up.

  • Jarhead6541

    The fact that you were fumbling with the safety is not a fault of your handgun, it’s a lack of training. Being prepared is also being comfortable with your weapon. Being a weapons expert in the Marines, I’ve used numerous types of weapons over my years, and I happen to prefer my FN40 over any handgun I’ve used. Flipping the safety should be second nature when picking up the weapon. You don’t need a Glock, you need more practice with your FN40. If you’re kids happen to grab that loaded Glock, there is no safety to protect them. Besides, in my opinion, the FN line are superior overall to Glocks and any other brand I’ve used.

    The pic is my FN40.

    • Mike T

      Agreed! I have an FNX and while I don’t use it for home defense, it’s my primary carry gun. Flipping the safety and being aware of what condition my weapon is in has become second nature. You don’t need a Glock, you need more training with the superior weapon system: the FN. Only thing about the FNS I don’t like is the trigger compared to the FNX.

      • Jarhead6541

        I’d say superior just about covers it, Mike. Can’t go wrong with FNH. Almost went with the FNX also, decided to go striker-fired this time and recommend this line to all who ask. It did take a few rounds to get the feel for the trigger pull, but now I actually prefer it. I do believe out of the box these are the best weapons for the money we can buy today. I’m guessing your HD weapon is a short barreled 12 gauge?

  • Jon

    There are days when my gut says be careful and I place a weapon within hands reach even when watching television. I don’t want to run to the other end of the house to get it.

  • Ken in CT

    I can relate to this article. I had similar experience in March of this year. Let me first set the back drop. I live in CT. About 15 minutes from where the Sandy Hook Tragedy occurred. The talk was all about locking up guns, removing “assault” rifles, etc… I have 4 guns in the house, two pistols, a shotgun and a 9mm carbine. Well, my carbine was one of those rifles to be banned so I decided to be proactive and store it. My shotgun sits in a single holder gun rack mounted in my closet above the door frame. Almost undetectable unless you know what to look for. I have a two floor house so I keep one pistol on each floor.

    Fast forward to March 2013 at 2am. Our home entry alarms goes off scaring the crap out of my wife, my toddler and myself who were all asleep in the master bedroom upstairs. Now, I have a glock 26 in my night stand (unloaded weapon with full mag next to it). However, my first instinct was to jump out my bed and grab my pump-shot gun out the closet. Took me about 7-10 seconds to get from my bed to the closet to holding point position in the hallway (the only way to the bedroom). My wife called the 9-11 with her cell phone which we keep by our bed. (Lesson 1: Make sure you have a phone near your bed at all times). The dispatch had many questions for BOTH of us. Remember, I’m holding a shotgun trained on the hallway entrance in case someone tries to come near the bedrooms (Lesson 2: Have speaker phone available in case police need to talk you). There was a storm that night so all the power in the area was out which also meant I could not see crap down the hallway and had to get my wife to give me my flash light which luckily I had in the night stand next to the pistol (Lesson 3: Have a flashlight attached or available next to your firearm). It was approximately 5-7 minutes before the cops arrived to my location and knocked on our door. Now I”m a very athletic man and by the time the cops came, I arms were exhausted for holding that shotgun in position. (Lesson 4: Make sure your weapon is light enough for you to hold your position until the threat is no longer). When the cops finally arrived and we did a search of the house we realized it was a false alarm caused by a signal interruption from the storm.

    I’ll be honest, I don’t know if I would have been able to open a safe with the time and in the conditions that I faced that night. Having a toddler in the house makes me even more concern on both ends of the spectrum as a gun owner and as a family protector.

    Not sure what the right answer is. Perhaps we’ll have to wait until technology keep up with protection needs in this aspect.

    This was a real life situation that lucky for us become a real life drill that instilled in me and my wife some lessons that we would have never thought of and I consider myself a very well prepared person. My advice to folks who THINK they have a plan in place is now “A well thought out plan is NOTHING compared to a well EXECUTED Plan so..EXECUTE your plan…just in case!”

  • Jim

    I carry on my ankle whenever I am awake!!!! If I am sleeping its on the bedside table, PERIOD. QED.

    Since he lives in FL, the FL CWP (Concealed Weapon Permit..since it includes billy clubs and BIG knives) is very easy to get and they are very friendly to CWP holders. I live in Texas, but I carry under a FL CWP. Its valid in Texas, costs 1/2 of what Texas charges and lasts twice as long until renewal!!

    Carrying a small pistol (KelTec P3AT .380) on the ankle ALL THE TIME becomes natural. It will solve the problem of having the gun hard to get or in the wrong room.

    The KelTec P3AT is made in Florida, weighs only 8 oz and carries 7 rounds of .380. If I ever meet someone coming after me at close range, that can absorb 7 rounds of Hornady Critical Defense (hollow point), I would think that he would be so big that he couldnt get through the door to get into the house.

    • Cathy McDowell

      YAY Jim!! I have guys attacking me here for using a small gun. Mine is a 22 magnum with 5 rounds. I also use the critical defense ammo.
      It will put down anyone. I just pray I don’t ever have to use it.
      It’s also a weapon that can carry and keep hidden at all times.
      I carry it in my waist band. No one knows I have it 🙂

  • IdahoCCW

    I have to agree with Jarhead! It sounds like to me if you had a Glock you would have accidentally fired it. I carry an H&K USP Compact 9mm and can’t imagine “fumbling” for the safety. But, I practice with it. I switch between my CC holster and another holster in my nightstand, so I practice grip & flick when it’s being pulled from the holster.

    • tricolordad

      My primary carry doesn’t have a safety. When you practice your draw, keep your trigger finger pointed straight down the holster, right above where the slide would be. Remember TABK, especially the K.

  • Mike Reese

    Put the safe on a table next to your bed. Last thing I do before going to bed is take my .40 XD with attached light out of the safe and lay it next to the separate flash light on the night stand . First thing I do in the morning is put the XD back in the safe. During the day I carry a 9mm Px4 sub compact and a BUG .380 LCP. At minimum I always have three LCP in a pocket. Also have a pretty alert small dog at home. No kids or wife but any guns are locked away or on me. A Ruger LCP sized gun will go into any pocket holster inside a pocket. Don’t recommend the LCP though.

  • Ever Ready

    First, the advice to do a dry run is excellent, but inadequate.
    You must look around your home and be aware of ALL the possible entry points. You must then do dry runs (plural is important) from everywhere in the home you might be when an invasion occurs. You must know where you will go from any location in order to arm yourself and to assure the assailant will be framed by a doorway, hall or other tight location.
    Thinking you know how or when an invasion will happen is a recipe for disaster.

  • Mitch Merritt

    I had this same sort of dilema. My girlfriend wasn’t too happy about me having guns, and was rather vocal about it if I had one loaded at any time other than outside. Fortunately (if this can be called such), she had a very graphic nightmare where she dreamt that our house was broken into while I was away, and the intruders shot all four of our dogs, and then her. It gave her a new feeling about weapons, and what they can do “for you”, as opposed to: “to you”. She decided to become something other than a future victim. We spent quite some time researching pistols, and visiting gun shows so she could handle a huge selection of weapons in search of one that fit her hand as comfortably as possible. Once we had that selection down, and guns purchased (I upgraded my carry piece at that time), we got her her carry permit and enrolled in a defensive pistol class with Sheriff Ken Campbell of the Boone County Sheriff’s Department (Best class I have ever taken!). I had taken this class already, and convinced her that this was a “must do” item. This class tought her everything she needed to know to handle her gun safely, confidently, and accurately if the need ever arose. This was last fall that we took the class. It was a nice surprise for me when she told me this spring that she wanted to take the class again. We enrolled and completed the course two weeks ago. Her abilities and comfort level improved tremendously from the first time. I now know that if the feces ever hits the oscillating cooling device that I won’t be alone in keeping us alive. We now keep two guns in the house loaded and accessable at all times. With spare loaded mags close at hand as well as super bright LED flashlights scattered all through the house.
    We don’t have children, and neither of us has young relatives nearby, so keeping them under lock and key isn’t an issue for us. Having said that, it doesn’t mean we leave them lying around either. Hers is within arms reach of the bed, and just a few seconds from her office at home, but still kept out of sight. Our 4 large dogs are her alarm, so we trust they would afford her the precious few seconds it would take to arm herself. I personally stay armed from the time I get dressed in the morning, until I crawl into bed at night. Not that I am paranoid, more that I refuse to become a victim due to complacency. At night I can draw my firearm from bed quickly without any fumbling around. And I practice drawing from my holster periodically.
    Granted, what works for us is more the exception than the rule for everyone else.
    For what it’s worth: just having a gun in the house isn’t enough. Training will make the difference. Find a qualified instructor, purchase good equipment, and do the work.

    • Michelle Frank

      @Mitch people forget exactly what you did with your girlfriend – take her to good training class, spend time with her on the range and help her find the appropriate firearm for her own use! I can’t say enough how appreciative I am of my father-in-law and my ex-husband in that regard. They took the time to teach me a skill that will last forever.

  • Since I have no children at home, loaded guns are not a problem for us. I have at least one weapon on every floor and we both know how to use them. An unloaded gun is as good as a shoe…. you can throw it at an intruder and hope you hit something.
    I NEVER leave home without my .357. We don’t live in a safe world, and I will defend myself and protect my family, neighbors and strangers. This is basically the oath you take when you receive a conceal carry in Colorado.

  • Safe Gun Owner

    I fully understand C’s concern. My quick access safe is in the bedroom. However, after watching news reports about recent home invasion robberies (not real close) I realized I was not close enough to my gun if someone kicked in my front door while I was watching tv. I now have my gun on me or sitting next to me in the living room, taking it to the bedroom when I go to bed. My wife wasn’t too crazy about this until the last report convinced her the gun needed to be closer. Fortunately we have no minors in the home. When the grandkids are here the gun is on me, not laying on the end table.

  • CFB

    CFB in Boise
    At home I carry my .40 cal glock #22 on me with no round is the chamber (I have practice draw, rack and shoot so many years that I can match my instructor when he draws and shoot with loaded chamber) two other pistols are hidden in kitchen and back bedroom. then I have a M-4 in a concealed location that is never more than 5 seconds away it is equipped with light ,CT green laser and ACOG low lighting sight and loaded with Flangible rounds it is loaded and safety OFF–bedtime the glock is under my pillow —my wife and I have practiced what to do if we have a home invasion (I’m 95% deaf) and or she is held hostage She knows the perp is going to die period

    • FILTERON

      Wait – you can draw (from holster), rack a round, and fire your weapon as quickly as your FIREARMS instructor can draw and fire his weapon from his holster? Look into a new instructor…

  • Frank Smith

    How about nipping it in the bud? I have a fence, sensors, cameras, 2 rotties and an alarm system. My Para double stack and the wife’s block 22 are in different quick access safes, or nearby in my control. The night scoped M4 is also close by. Maybe, if you parachuted in, and came through my skylight without breaking it, sensors would hear it crack, you; might get in without me knowing. Of course my Rotties would probably :hear you. Paranoid, you say? NOT! After 12 failed attempts, I find it good training now, but I haven’t seen baddies in a while. Guess they figured out I’M the predator HERE. I sleep great!

    • 1LTVeteran

      I work under the premise that I could be confronted with a life threatening situation at anytime and at the time seconds, milliseconds, matter. Wether it’s a threat from a four legged animal or a two legged one you have to be prepared. I carry a Glock 23 in .40 mm in an Galco Tut inside the waistband holster. I carry all the time and it allows me to be completely comfortable with carrying. I have double magazine holster for extra mags and dummy ammunition so I can practice my quick draw and reload procedures. I recently joined IDPA to better hone my skills.

      • Joe Brown

        Wow that .40 mm is something special! It must be incredibly difficult to find ammo for it.

        • 1LTVeteran

          Thanks. LOL!

          • tricolordad

            Not here. The shelves are full of .40. It’s actually the only caliber available. I bought 7 boxes this week and the shelves are still full at the store I buy from.

          • LadySarahBeth

            can you mail me some!! 😉

          • tricolordad

            no way ladysarahbeth lol

          • BigBore

            I think the point was the 40 MM instead of .40 CALIBRE, not the 40.

  • Mordecai

    I have purchased an under the desk holster from the NRA store. I mounted it under my nightstand. Thanks to the scrollwork, you can’t see it even if you are looking for it. I can access it in less then three seconds from being wakened. We have a ranch, so other floors are not a problem. I do keep a weapon on me so being in another part of the house is not a problem. Hopefully, I will never have to use it.

  • austin’s

    I’ve taught CCW classes in Louisiana for 17 yrs. I tell my students: “If I am dressed, I am armed – at home at 7AM, 12 noon downtown or 7PM at home. We do not have any children at home, my 45 is on top of my nightstand – with a small flashlight. My wife has her 357 on her side of the bed. My ar is in a nearby closet, loaded. If we have guests all but my carry are locked up. If you chose to break in, or force your way in do so at your own risk. Louisiana is a “Your home is your castle” state and I am not required to retreat but to allowed to meet force with force.

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  • hsabin

    A gun just steps away or locked up is as useful as a policeman who comes in 15 minutes. Guns should be right next to you at all times. If you have kids….train them to use and respect a gun and get them into USA shooting – they possibly could get a full college scholarship if they will shoot through high school.

    Wives should also shoot to provide a second shooter to take out any perps iras back up. Shotguns with short barrels make the best home protection weapon as the shot comes out in a cone fashion and can take out possibly two with one shot. The shot also won’t travel through walls like regular rounds will.

    Staying put and NOT trying to scope out the noise or perps is the best thing to do! Let the police come and do the home search.

    • fourthrowe

      Better check your shotgun ballistics there. Given the distances involved in the average house, #8 shot will be almost identical to a slug because the wad hasn’t even departed until several yards outside the barrel.

      • tricolordad

        Knowledge bomb lol

  • Worst case fixer

    The first thing you should do is buy more time. Reinforce your door strikes by removing the decorative tiny screws and replace them with 3 inch wood screws and make sure they go into the studs around the door frame. Do the same with the screws in the hinges. This will not prevent someone from being able to kick in your doors but will certainly slow them down and most will likely give up before getting in.

    If you want to prevent easy glass breakage then put window film on the glass. If someone tries to break the glass the film will hold the shattered glass together and again make it much harder and longer to enter the house.

    To prevent someone picking or bumping a lock, install bump proof locks. There are also devices call door guardians that use no key and can only be unlocked from the inside. Be careful with these as they will also prevent fire fighters from easily getting thru your door in the event of a fire.

    Doing these simple modifications to your doors and windows will prevent all but the most determined invaders and will cause more noise and slow down the determined ones giving you time to make sure your gun is loaded and safety is off.

    Cheers!

  • Remedy

    Remember this, the latest stats. for police officers in on duty shoot outs, their
    percentage of actual hits to the bad guys were only 13 percent.
    This means they miss 87 out of one hundred times, now consider yourself, how would you do? , Theses officers are trained to handle such incidents and have the mindset
    to react quickly and efficiently, and still the stats. are low.

    • Shotgun Denham

      It has been my experience that I put in more training hours now that I am retired than I ever did as a police officer. I have also assured myself better access to superior weapons and equipment. Based on national average reports on training by most police departments, I fear this is a true statement in many parts of the country.

  • geezer117

    I always have a KelTech .32 with laser sights in my front pocket. It is so easy I forget it is there. I never allow myself to say I don’t think I need it right now; it is always in my pocket. Wherever I am it is 2-3 seconds away from my hand, as I run to my main bedroom 9mm, which is always ready to fire. Fortunately, there are no children in the house ever.

  • Spike Dawg

    I have all but one pistol locked in a Liberty Timberland safe. The one pistol that’s not locked is either holstered on my side or within a moments notice in my night stand. It’s loaded with 9mm (Ruger SR9c) personal defense ammo and ready to go if needed. Safety on? No. My finger is my safety. If someone plans to break into my home, he better not have any plans for tomorrow. Nuf said.

  • BikerBill

    With just my wife and I at home, my Springfield 1911 is loaded and sits on my nightstand. No delay in access, I can just grab it and I’m ready. I keep a spare mag, a Surefire flashlight and a fixed blade SOG knife next to the reload. My wife’s not a gun fan, but she has a Kimber pepper spray blaster handy. I keep a 7-shot revolver hidden in the living room, another in a cabinet over the toilet in the master bedroom and when I’m home, an NAA Pug is in my pocket. About once or twice a month I take an unloaded gun and move through the house at night, using a flashlight and practicing routes that best keep me concealed and allow me to ensure the house is cleared.
    As for access with children around, one of those cases that opens with fingerprints or a button combination lock seems the best idea. With fingerprints, I believe they can be programmed for several users.
    I’ve been awakened a few times at oh-dark-30, usually by wildlife knocking something over on the back patio, and it’s a scary feeling. Glad it was just your dog — but next time, you might not be so lucky. A gun is just a chunk of metal and plastic unless it’s loaded and there when you need it.

  • John St Charles

    Answer to home invasions carry at home also

  • judojoe

    I carry S&W model 360 with me at all times.When I am sleeping my hand is on the revolver. This is a no-no if you have children. You would probably be better off with a strong pepper spray, that’s the price you pay when young ones are around. I learned to make a weapon part of me when I served with the Special War Group ( pick a # ,ican’t reveal it). This sleep-weapon awareness has to become as normal to you as picking your nose. Try it with an unloaded weapon for a few months and study the process of sleep-awareness found in any SOG or MACV operational manual from the ’60’s.

    • tricolordad

      That’s untrue. A good parent will teach their children to respect firearms and to never touch and why. I OC at all times. When I go to bed, I keep the locked and loaded semi auto in the holster, unsnapped, right above my head in the headboard, or under my pillow if I choose (or my wife kicks me out) to sleep in the living room. I have never had any problems with my kids touching or attempting to touch my gun because I took the time to educate them. And trust me, they love to misbehave. As I type, the 3 year old is attempting to shove the 5 year old off the couch and the 5 year old is kicking her in the face.

      With a little initiative, you can achieve firearm harmony in your house. Lazy parents often suffer stupid mistakes. Kids are born curious. Educate them about guns, answer all the questions honestly and allow them to feel the unloaded gun after they identify when it is safe to touch (ex: only with dad’s permission and when dad is supervising) and why (ex: because the slide is locked back, the chamber is empty, and no magazine is in the gun and dad confirms it.) Take them shooting with you, bring a watermelon, compare the size of it to the size of their torso and show them what happens if a gun goes off. (I showed my kids what happens “when you f___ around.”) When it’s not a mystery, the kid will move on to something they can explore, like what’s in Aunt Mary’s purse lol.

  • bruiser

    There have been several home invasions within 10 miles of us. One resulted in the death of one of the perps when the homeowner shot him. I have two weapons within easy reach of the bedside. One is my PT22 and the other is my Bersa Thunder Ultra Compact .40. Both are loaded and ready. We live in a single story house and the master is just off the living room. I will probably move one close to the couch. We don’t have any children living at home, so we don’t have to worry too much about easy access. Regarding flaslights, we both have a Utilitech single LED light next to the bed. This is the brightest single LED light I have found. It’s sold at Lowes. I also have a Ruger 10/22 but it’s in the closet and is not loaded.

  • darpavien

    I don’t have any children at home anymore. So I made a holster that hangs between my box spring and my mattress. I load my gun and have it accessible next to my bed while I sleep. When I get up I unload it and place it in a safe in my closet and retrieve my conceal gun to carry with me. It works for me, and I always have a gun handy.

  • docmagnum357

    Reading the replies, folks never cease to amaze me. I see so much stuff in these replies that will get you D-E-A-D quick fast, and in a hurry. Common hick fallacies, internet stupidity, and , actually, some original stupidity.
    The smartest reply was from the fellow with the Rotties and the M4 with the night scope.
    I don’t fly airplanes, never have, and I probably ever will. But I always try imaging myself in a new person’s shoes. Even then, I can’t imagine believing some of the stuff a lot of folks believe. I guess I would believe some goofy stuff about aeronautics if I were a new pilot.
    Shooting defensively isn’t magic. You can’t buy your way to security with equipment, you have to get some real world, common sense training, and you have to stay current with it. Shooting is a perishable skill. Another person talked about IDPA. It is a game, and it is a sport, but it is a lot better than ” going to the range”. you learn to hit targets at different ranges, quickly. There are also some ” no shoots” thrown in. Good on you, whoever you are. USPSA, IPSIC, IDPA….none are perfect, al are a lot better than standing on the line in an indoor range, plinking at targets. You need the basics down first, but procede to “practical” asap. There are no bullseyes on bad guys.
    Anyone ever heard of a SAFE ROOM? If I am going to start sling lead around, I think I want to know where all the family members are; It might be one of them making the horrible noise. It was a pet in the scenario above. Having a gun and being willing to use it are really good ideas, but when you only have a hammer, all your problems begin to look like nails. Effective personal security is a layered concept, and only having one layer will not get the job done. Safe rooms, bear spray, alarms, dogs, NVGs, and a way to communicate are all potential life savers.
    Lastly, keep on reading the articles here. I don’t always agree with everything here, but I haven’t seen anything that will get you killed. Replies…..hmmm, Like I say, if I were a new pilot, I would maybe leave common sense behind some , too.

  • Tre’

    I had a similar incident in El Paso, Tx. I had just arrived home and set down my computer bag when I heard a noise on my back patio. I immediately grabbed my Springfield .45 XDM and headed out of the front door. The tactical reason for this was my home is surrounded by a 5ft. brick wall with gate accesses on either side in the front. I didn’t want to run out of the back door and instantly be face to face with an intruder. I used the wall near the gate as cover and concealment as I peered into the back yard to see someone checking out my BBQ grill and patio furniture. I ordered the person to put his hands up and get down on his knees with his ankles crossed (I used to work law enforcement, and I was a small arms instructor in the navy). While covering him, I called 911. Later it was discovered that he thought the house was vacant and that the items in the back were left behind (I didn’t buy that because it was a brand new house, and we had curtains and blinds on the windows and ADT signs everywhere). To make a long story short, I didn’t press charges, but I had him tresspassed because he turn out to be a 67 yr. old immigrant worker looking for scrap metal to sale. The main thing was that I was prepared and ready in an instant. No safety to fumble with on my gun, and the gun was fully loaded. I keep a gun on each level in the house, and my kids are trained about guns. They no longer have a curiosity about them because they regularly go to the range with me; even my eight yr. old daughter, who has her own .22 rifle (when not in use, it stays in my gun safe). I carry concealed because I never want to be in a situation and need one and not have one. I don’t want to be a hero. I just want to be able to protect my family and friends should the need arise.

  • Kudzu

    I can only hope that I will be ready IF anyone comes into my house uninvited. During the day I have my Ruger right beside my chair within easy reach. At night when I’m in bed, my gun cabinet is in my bedroom with me. Any gun that I may reach in and grab is loaded and only need one put in the chamber. As far as my kids, I’ve raised them with a respect for all guns. To treat every one as if it were loaded. Just showing them off is a no no. If it were to happen that someone were to somehow get inside without being heard and they wake me up already in my bedroom then they get introduced to my USMC Kabr from the head of my bed. My wife calls me paranoid but who cares IF I ever have to save mine or her life.

  • Freedom Fighter

    I don’t have kids so I pretty much have a gun hidden in every room of the house for easy access!

    I’m prepared for a multi-person home invasion, are you prepared?

  • LadySarahBeth

    I just realized I need to put a flashlight next to my Glock! I also realized that maybe I need to hide another gun at the other end of my house in case I can’t get to the ones that are ready to rock and roll. So…this being said, I need to go gun shopping hahaha! And until then I suppose I will just but my holster on and carry through out the house…yes I am paranoid with all the crazy methheads/gangbangers/stupid idiots in our world. I do not want to be another victim.

    I am a responsible parent and have taught my children gun safety, seriously take them to the range and blow up a watermelon just once with a round and ask them to put it back together…they get it just like Humpty Dumpty their friends can’t be put back together again.

    Better to be safe rather than sorry!!

  • TXiceman

    First, do not go downstairs looking for the perps. You do not know how many there are. You are better off hunkering down in a corner upstairs ready to defend your family. They will come to the master bedroom, so just wait them out and you have control.

  • Franklin J Clair Jr

    I was next door to a home invasion about 20 years ago. It only took a few seconds for the bad guys to gain access to the home and assault the homeowner. I always wear my .40 cal so I don’t have to retrieve it from my locked gun safe. If I should ever walk into my home while an intruder is there I am ready to use my weapon if I have to. It is also vital to keep yourself in the proper frame of mind if you should ever need to defend yourself with a gun.

  • Mr Bear

    Why on earth would you leave the safety of upstairs and go looking for trouble? Not the best idea in my opinion. You’ve got your firearm and the advantage. Hold tight and call the police. Let the bad guys come to you.

  • Robert Ritchards

    I had seen this article before, and as a result bought an under the desk holster from the NRA store. You can’t see this weapon looking for it. I keep a loaded magazine in my M&P 9c, but not one in the chamber. In simulating that I’m sleeping, and on the far side of the bed, from “sleep” to loaded and ready is 3-4 seconds. I highly recommend getting one of these under the desk holsters.

  • Matt

    I have kids the same age and instead of giving them access to my gun. I gave them a pepper spray gun and a taser. One on each side of the house so easy to get too and it’s mounted on the wall in a protected area. That way if they show it off to their friends and it goes off, no one is killed. Thanks for your story.

  • BigBore

    Your children may be mature enough to handle firearms, but ask yourself if are they mature enough to make the decision of when to take or not to take another human’s life?

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