Calling 9-1-1 during home invasion?

This is a discussion on Calling 9-1-1 during home invasion? within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; As I was responding to another post; I thought this deserved it's own discussion. The more I thought about calling 9-1-1 before taking defensive action; ...

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Thread: Calling 9-1-1 during home invasion?

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    Distinguished Member Array RightsEroding's Avatar
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    Calling 9-1-1 during home invasion?

    As I was responding to another post; I thought this deserved it's own discussion.

    The more I thought about calling 9-1-1 before taking defensive action; the less I embraced this advice.

    In a perfect world; or in this case; considering what we would do in the comfort of our homes behind the keyboard is stress free and easy.
    I doubt anyone would disagree, when the SHTF, in this case a home invasion, rational thought blurs as we hopefully fall back on our training.

    I disagree with calling 9-1-1 first as part of our plan as I feel the dynamics in assessing a home invasion threat are far too numerous.

    1) As I woke, how long has the invasion been going on? I.e)..Where is the threat?

    2) How many perps?

    3) Does the phone call give away my position?

    4) There may be children in our home closer to harm than we are in the master bedroom.

    5) The call may legally sink me!

    Number 5 deserves special attention; at least in my mind.

    We all know 9-1-1 calls are recorded. (ya, I have a gift in over stating the obvious)

    In the heat of battle (yes, it's battle if someone is in my home uninvited at 2am)..with a live call to the 9-1-1 dispatcher, EVERYTHING is recorded!
    Not just my voice; perhaps the BG's voice, the sounds at the scene, the voices of my kids, wife etc...

    Such a recording can either be a aid to us later if legal proceedings ensue or it might just sink us!

    We would all like to think in such a crisis moment we will be cool, calm and collected and say the right things in a attempt to end the invasion without deadly force.
    Remember, if we called 9-1-1 first, the recorder is running.

    Just imagine if during this time of high stress we say something.

    Perhaps the warning we gave to the BG was politically incorrect in the heat of the moment. OH boy! I can just hear some over zealous prosecutor attempt to show a jury you had malice in your heart.
    How about the phone picking up the BG saying "OK..I'm leaving..don't shoot"..and it was a ploy to get one to lower our guard while the BG hides, you come around the corner and BAM!..You're dead.

    OR. he fires at you as he runs out the door; you return fire and strike him in the back AFTER 9-1-1 recordings of the event clearly hear him say "OK..I'm leaving..don't shoot"

    Maybe the accomplice is still outside attempting entry via another window?

    Too many negatives to mention.

    At the moment of waking to a possible home invasion, adrenaline is at it's max.
    After a SD shooting; the chemicals coursing thru our veins is beginning to ramp down...

    It is then I will call 9-1-1...NOT when my brain needs to be committed to the repelling of the invader; NOT calling HQ to tell them I am about to be overrun
    by 2,000 VC who have already started shooting at me.

    No thanks! I for one will not CALL 9-1-1 as my first order of business during a home invasion unless the BG calls me on the phone and states his intention to be over around 2am for the home invasion.
    Last edited by rstickle; May 22nd, 2014 at 07:29 AM. Reason: Language
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    I always thought I would first call 911, tell them what and where, then turn off the speaker, put the phone down, and take care of business.
    Now, I am thinking I would have the wife call, so it is her voice that 911 hears and her describing the events. The scared voice of a wife and mother will help more in a trial, than something I may or not say.
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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    My basic approach, for me:

    If I've got sufficient time to call 911/cavalry when I'm witnessing something and am in need of assistance, I'll call.

    If, as is more likely in an invasion situation I think, I'm pressed for time and need to be focusing on surviving the incident, any call for the clean-up crew can wait.

    If I've got a compatriot with me who can be dialing for help as we're hunkering down, that's great. But the last thing I want, necessarily, is a full and complete recording of everything that can be diced to pieces later. I'm all for the physical evidence showing the forcible entry, the defensive position, the basic steps taken by the residents. And I'm all for the intruder(s) being scanned/scrubbed/questioned after help has arrived, if he survives it.


    Have made a few calls previously. Have yet to have an urgent situation involving invasion of the home's perimeter while I was there, so each call (so far) has only been notifying of situations that were brewing.
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    Distinguished Member Array RightsEroding's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LuvMyPX4 View Post
    I always thought
    That was PART of my point..I don't want to (think) about anything other than saving my life or those around me.

    As you (THOUGHT) about it, imagine thinking about it in the heat of a invasion? The time to make such a decision may get you or someone else killed.

    (IF) it ever happens to me I have drilled and rehearsed what I will do...

    Call 9-1-1 after the fact ASAP. Tell them there has been a shooting. Send LE...Tell LE my life was in jeopardy; I was forced to defend myself, there is the invader..there is the evidence and then.........
    Tell the investigators I will be happy to cooperate AFTER I speak with my attorney.

    Shout UP!..Take the 5th ...actually and verbally use the words....Memorize them.
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    As said by ccw9mm I'd have someone else call the 911 operator if available. If you're alone then I guess a case-by-case would be in order and a speaker phone would be handy. But, IMO, I feel the 911 is very important to get through so your "backup" can be dispatched.

    Where I disagree is that I'd want the line open so the whole thing can be heard. The warning to get out, the warning that I am armed and will fire, etc. Any off-color language will be written off as heat of the moment and I'd not sweat that. Racial or ethnic slurs, you've got problems. But I'm under the impression that you want documentation of your actions and YOU'D BETTER BE RIGHT IN WHAT YOU DO! Don't shoot someone running out the house or dropping their weapon to surrender. This ain't TV....
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    Distinguished Member Array RightsEroding's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robhic View Post
    and YOU'D BETTER BE RIGHT IN WHAT YOU DO! Don't shoot someone running out the house or dropping their weapon to surrender. This ain't TV....
    I am unwilling to take such a chance with a over zealous prosecutor who will interpret/twist my actions or words to sway a grand jury to indict. I can be 100% in the right and eventually acquitted
    of all charges, but in the process of defending it, my life is ruined. It HAS happened to others.
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    You have some valid concerns. But every home invasion situation is unique.
    If alone, defend yourself, call 911 when you can. If not alone, split up the workload. Someone call 911, the other repel the BGs. The point of home defense is to stop the invasion, not save the world from one or more BGs.

    My advise is to have a several plans. If your whole family is home, what is the plan?
    If the kids are home alone, what is their plan?

    We can "what if" for months. Real life will still bring things we didn't think of.
    Surviving long enough to go to trial for SD is still a win!
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    Senior Member Array Fizban's Avatar
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    without being overly dramatic I will say that speaking just for myself in my own set of unique circumstances...

    If in the moment when I feel a criminal attack in imminent or underway, I will call 911 as long as doing that is not going to obviously put me in greater danger than doing something else. If I feel that it is reasonably safe for me to call 911 for help- I will. I will call 911, request help, impress upon them the nature of the emergency and lay the phone down. If I feel that calling 911 is not safe at the moment or that enough time does not exist, I will call as soon as practicable.

    Due to the fast moving and fluid nature of most emergencies, it hard to really outline responses other than to speak generally in a hope to establish a [spirit] of the rule.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RightsEroding View Post
    That was PART of my point..
    Look at your avatar
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    I employ my 1-9-1-1 then I call 9-1-1. I am not looking for a response in minutes when seconds count.
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    Distinguished Member Array DingBat's Avatar
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    don't most dispatcher instruct you to stay on the line? how much weight does that carry?
    if you call and then disable the speaker or set the phone down, have you, right there, given an "overzealous DA" some ammunition right there?
    what about....

    Calling 911, and not saying a word, muting the phone and setting it down, but leaving the call live? they will trace it and send a unit, maybe not "code super-fast-scary-guns" but help is coming, and your not being recorded... "my client heard someone in the house, wanted help on the way but my client knew he couldn't talk for fear of giving himself away..."

    and can't you text 911 now?

    "invaders in house. send help. Address ####" -- ??? takes a minute to text, but if wife, then no recording and no reason to not have a recording...?
    EDIT- you could even keep a "draft" of this message ready to go?

    thoughts?
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    The appropriate action would depend on circumstances. I see where you're coming from with worrying about there being a record of the entire event but the flip side is that if you *do* have time to call 911 and don't that same prosecutor is going to rip the same hole in the same orifice. As in most SD situations you're not going to get out unscathed if you have to pull the trigger so it's pick your poison.

    For me, part of being as responsible and law abiding as possible is calling 911 as early in the situation as the tactical situation permits.
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    If my wife is able to call 911 as the situation is going down, great. If not, there will be time to call them soon enough. My concern with 911 isn't that it is being recorded, but that it is of no immediate value in remedying my situation.
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    Our routine is that my wife calls 911 and remains on the line until the police arrive.
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    Senior Member Array Fizban's Avatar
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    don't most dispatcher instruct you to stay on the line? how much weight does that carry?
    It doesnt carry much weight with me... I am in the dangerzone not them. I will tell them what I can and then I am going to focus on staying alive
    Think like a man of action - Act like a man of thought

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