Masked men on the property (real situation)
First off, I have been lurking on these forums for several months now, and I have read some extremely valuable, thought-provoking threads. I have not had a reason to register until now, but a situation that occurred several nights ago on the property has me wanting some feedback.
I recently moved back from Montana to Washington to spend some time with family that I've missed out on in the last three years. They live in a more metropolitan area, so I automatically find myself on alert most of the time(my neighbors now live fifty feet away rather than five miles away). I have carried concealed 24/7 since I got my CCW at twenty-one, and done a fair bit of defensive handgun training on my own (no professional courses, though I plan to take one soon). This neighborhood has seen a major surge in breaking and entering, as well as burglaries in the last weeks. Also of note, nearby gangs have been recruiting heavily in the last months(information from a LEO friend of mine). There has been a heightened police presence in the area because of this, so they are able to respond rather quickly(three to eight minutes). Our neighbors house has been targeted recently, including what would have been a push-in home invasion had our neighbor opened the door to the bad guys. With these occurrences, I found it prudent to install wireless motion alarms around the property, adding them to the floodlights already installed around the property.
About one AM, four nights ago, the driveway wireless alarm sounded and it woke up my dog and I. Everyone else in the house are seriously heavy sleepers and did not stir. I brought my 1911 and my surefire to the kitchen with me and looked out on the driveway. There are windows viewing East to the driveway and North to the main road from where I stood in the kitchen. The driveway floodlights had not switched on, so I spotlighted around the vehicles in the driveway and yard with my surefire, thinking I'd find the neighbors cat stalking mice in the grass. An individual in all black clothes and a white hockey mask began running from the driveway to the West down the main road, stopped past the low hedgerow to the West of the property and pulled out a cell phone. Seconds later, a low-rider Red Nissan 2-door pickup sped down the road and pulled up onto the sidewalk. The driver got out (also wearing all black clothing and a hockey mask), the two individuals spoke for a bit, glancing up at the property often, got into the pickup and sped up the main road to the East. I called the police, let them know the situation was already over but I wanted to report the suspicious activity anyhow, and within four minutes a few cruisers came through. I had enough adrenaline coursing through my system after seeing the masked individual run from our property and decided I would not be getting back to sleep anytime soon. I alerted everyone else in the house(no simple task, getting some of my family out of dreamland) of the situation and for them to keep their pistols in easy reach. After starting a pot of coffee, I watched the main road from the living room.
A half-hour or so after the original incident, a white four-door Camry slowly cruised up the road to the East, loaded with what looked to be about five or six individuals, every one of them staring hard at the property(I could not obtain a license plate number or identify the people in the car). This got my Adrenaline going a second time. A half-hour later, the same car loaded with passengers cruised slowly to the West down the main road, all of them staring at the property again. For the next four hours the same car cruised by almost every half-hour on the dot, still loaded with passengers, still staring hard at the property. I ended up pulling an all-nighter, 1911 on my hip as usual, 12-gauge within reach. We have not had any more suspicious activity in the days following, but I wonder how serious these people are in their mischief.
In my mind, someone wears a hockey mask if they are planning to have a face to face confrontation. If they just wanted to steal one of our trucks, why wear a mask? What are your thoughts?
My mind has been busy with scenarios and "what ifs" the past couple days. There is a good chance they aren't getting past the threshold of the front door without buckshot and a snarling dog flying their way, but what if the five or six people in the white car are connected to the original incident? Were they planning a home invasion? I'm not eager to face five or six fellows piling through our front door. We have moved all of our long guns to a safe location not in this house (if guns are their target) and the self defense pistols and shotguns stay at easy reach or leave with us when we leave the house unoccupied (in case they break and enter when we are out). My family seems to think it is an over-the-top precaution, but I don't think it's that crazy. I don't want our guns to fall into bad hands. The neighbors have been informed and are prepared. I pray that the bad guys decide it's just not worth it, but I am ready for them if they try any funny business again. Some of my family believe it is not that important to carry their pistol on them in the house, and that these bad guys are not going to try anything again, but I do not feel as safe as they do. Am I being paranoid about this and am I taking too much caution? Should I be doing more to convince my family to be more prepared for a dangerous situation? How would any of you have reacted to a situation like this? The only thing I know for sure from all this is I am ready to get out of the city and back to the country as soon as I can. Thanks for any insight or feedback.