Child At Your Door In The Middle Of The Night

Child At Your Door In The Middle Of The Night

This is a discussion on Child At Your Door In The Middle Of The Night within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; You're sleeping peacefully in your bed. It's between midnight and 3am when you hear frantic knocking at your door or doorbell ringing, etc. You do ...

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Thread: Child At Your Door In The Middle Of The Night

  1. #1
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    Array limatunes's Avatar
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    Child At Your Door In The Middle Of The Night

    You're sleeping peacefully in your bed. It's between midnight and 3am when you hear frantic knocking at your door or doorbell ringing, etc.

    You do whatever it is you do to go to the door to identify the individual and find a 7-9 y/o neighbor child in his/her pajamas desperately pleading for help.

    You recognize the child from the neighborhood and are decently good terms with the parents. Perhaps you aren't great friends but there is no bad blood between you either. You may have exchanged pleasantries while out in the yard or even helped out with some tools or yard projects or gone over for a back yard barbeque or two. If you have kids that age you've allowed the children to play together in the yard. For the purposes of this scenario let's say you have never been inside of the home, however.

    When asked what's wrong the child says that someone is in his/her house with a knife and hurting the rest of the family. Only s/he was able to escape to find help.

    Of course you call 911 but then what do you do?

    For those in rural areas with exceptionally long response times, does that affect your decision making at all?


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array Civil_Response's Avatar
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    Try to keep my family and the child safe and hope for the best after calling 911. I would also try and pay attention to the area to see if I can make out any faces or license plate numbers.

    Not that it would make much difference in my decision, but in Minnesota it would be outside my legal boundary to assist... I would HAVE to retreat. Sorry, they might be good neighbors, but I'm not missing my children growing up for them because I'm dead or in jail.

    I'm not a cop, and don't even play one on TV. Plain and simple, I'm not trained nor qualified to handle that situation and would most likely put everyone in greater danger by escalating the situation.

    The people in that house are probably already in a world of hurt, I feel for them and it will haunt me the rest of my life. However keeping my family and the child protected will greatly help any remorse I may have for not going over there.

    If I go over there and die, my family and that child may be next - I'm not letting that happen by being stupid or trying to be a hero. For all I know my quiet and polite neighbor who I barely know may have raped this guy's daughter, doesn't make what he's doing right, but I don't know the situation and I'm not getting involved.

  3. #3
    Member Array gunsnroses's Avatar
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    I would have to agree with Thunder. I think your best course of action would be to call 911 and secure the child and your family. Also be a good witness.

    Unfortunately, there is nothing that I could do, nor am I trained to do it.

  4. #4
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    I'd take the child in, hunker down and be ready to defend my own family as well as the child I've now taken responsibility for. This exact scenario happened with the recent Copley Ohio shooting. Because the family the child sought help from was unable to defend their home, it damn near cost them their own child. The neighbor child was killed in their basement witnessed by their child, who were friends.

    Under no circumstance would I leave my own responsibility to defend what is most likely a lost cause anyway. And that is coming from somebody who is trained, properly equipped and has experience in going to the neighbors to be a hero; first things first. You cannot leave your own responsibility to try and make up for the lack of others preparedness. You will end up being on the losing end every time.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    VIP Member Array Civil_Response's Avatar
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    I'll add that I'd love to say I'd take the child in and make sure my family is safe, then go over there and make a non-lethal capture of the suspect and tie them to a post until the cops got there, and in the meanwhile keep the injured people alive providing medical care until the ambulance showed up to save the day.

    But I figured I'd post something more realistic.

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array Guantes's Avatar
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    The only thing I would add, would be to elevate my response capability level a couple notches.
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    "I do what I do." Cpl 'coach' Bowden, "Southern Comfort".

  7. #7
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    Personally, I would secure the child and the other families in my home to make sure this was not a "progressive home invasion", I would then grab my chain/badge to make myself easily identifiable, and weapon, plus extra mag and respond to the neighbor's house, where I may be able to confront and stop the threat, providing they had not already fled. I would not expect the same respond from civilians. I agree with previous posts, civilians, should secure their own house, and the child, and be prepared to defend themselves, call 911 and wait for response.

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    You walk into the neighbors.... wife is pointing a gun at her husband, who's the bad guy ? Who's doing harm to whom ? Do you know ? The wife could be protecting herself from her husband who has a knife you don't see, as one example.

    The 'child', should tell you what's going on ... and who's doing what. Relay that to 911 so the Police know that info.

    Do not go in there without the Police knowing you are there.... and a "man with a gun" in that situation, will not be treated as a hero, but a suspect who's armed.

    It's dicey at best.

    Now given that, if there is serious physical harm coming to children..... I would NOT sit back and would probably take my chances .... but, I would let 911 know I'm there, how I'm dressed, that I'm armed and going to try to stop the carnage. But, I'm not going in to stop a domestic violence situation where the kids are not being seriously and physically harmed. .... I'ld let the local LEO's handle all of that.
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    Senior Member Array Dadsnugun's Avatar
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    Get the child inside, secure the door, retrieve the shotgun while dialing 911, and hunker down in a "safe" room with he rest of the household until PD arrives. I'm too old and in my current neighborhood PD is too close to make intervention by me a sensible option. I can, however protect my home and family, especially with the added warning provided by the child.
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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    I would take the child in call 911, ect...ect,. I would like to think I would just stay home, but the thought of someone dying who I could possibly help just overrides my common sense here. The least I would do is see if I could gain a viewpoint vantage where I could observe what was going on in the home.

    That way I could relay info via dispatch that may help the responding unit hit the ground running. Intel is critical in these situations.

    If I observed an act of hostility, such as an act of stabbing before they got there, I could hopefully stop it by knocking on the window and yelling, without , at least at this point , physically engaging the perp.
    This action may be enough to prevent further injury.

    If the perp decodes to stop his assault, and get rid of the witness, ( me), I maybe able to get him to chase me to neutral ground before sending him to hell.

    That would be my plan, with full knowledge that it may require adjustments.

    My lady is very capable of holding things down until I return.
    paullie, jag06 and fragmatic like this.
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    VIP Member Array oakchas's Avatar
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    The very best I could do in the situation...

    May just be call 911 and hope for the best... Response time is 10 min+ around here... I do have the town cop's cell number, I might try that, but he'd have to get geared up too... still 10 minutes roughly.

    In an ideal situation, very unlikely, if I could ascertain the number of BGs, and the weaponry involved... I MIGHT attempt to block their egress, with my own vehicle...

    It's had to take a couple of minutes for the child to get here... another couple of minutes to respond to the child, 10+ minutes for LEO to arrive... We've got 15 minutes elapsed already... a lot can or has happened in that time... I can get a vehicle up there and block egress in a minute or less... but I cannot go into the situation... That's the very best I could do.

    There would be some hope to at least catch the BG(s) if I'm able to block egress... But what has happened has happened... and that would be painful to deal with.

    Can't answer to what I would do if I were a "townie." But response time should be lower at least.
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  12. #12
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    My initial response echos SIXTO's...

    Quote Originally Posted by SIXTO
    Under no circumstance would I leave my own responsibility to defend what is most likely a lost cause anyway. And that is coming from somebody who is trained, properly equipped and has experience in going to the neighbors to be a hero; first things first. You cannot leave your own responsibility to try and make up for the lack of others preparedness. You will end up being on the losing end every time.
    How do I know my house isn't next?? or there are other BGs waiting outside to get ahold of me/my family??
    tts likes this.
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    Like others here, I'd take the kid in, call 911 and hunker down - and be absolutely miserable. It would be torture knowing that something that I could possibly prevent is happening, knowing that I'll spend the rest of my life second-guessing myself.

    Eagleks makes excellent points. In addition, as I thought about this situation, even though I am not trained to address it, I would be sorely tempted to check on the neighbor. Now imagine being outside in the dark in the neighbor's yard. Suddenly someone runs out of the house and is running toward you. Are they running to safety? He/she/it is gonna be on you in two seconds - you shout 'stop'. Too late, he's on you with a knife.

    Yup, I'd stay hunkered and miserable.
    Last edited by WHEC724; October 20th, 2011 at 05:05 PM.
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    I'm seventeen miles from the nearest LE office, and probably that far from the nearest LEO at any given time. Knowing most of my neighbors as I do, your hypothetical BG bought a knife to a gunfight.

  15. #15
    VIP Member Array Guantes's Avatar
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    I would not consider estimating the BG's armament on the words of a scared child wise.
    "I do what I do." Cpl 'coach' Bowden, "Southern Comfort".

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