Home Defense (well sort of)

This is a discussion on Home Defense (well sort of) within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Here is a scenario that happened to me about a month ago. I was working on a customer's lake house in Hiawassee, GA. This house ...

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Thread: Home Defense (well sort of)

  1. #1
    Member Array KellyCooper's Avatar
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    Home Defense (well sort of)

    Here is a scenario that happened to me about a month ago.
    I was working on a customer's lake house in Hiawassee, GA. This house is a solid 2 hours away from home so when I am asked to work on it, I typically pack for a stay and work well into the night and sleep there. This one particular night, I had been working until about 11:00 before finally heading upstairs to unwind before going to sleep. I was trying to get a good bit accomplished before my customer showed up the next evening with guests (his nephew and wife). I had just finished my dinner, went out front to smoke a cigarette (I know it's a bad habit) and sat down to watch a little TV. At about midnight I am sitting there when I hear the doorknob rattling and then the door getting pushed open. (it has the old copper weatherstripping so it makes the door "stick" and in order to fully open it takes a good bit of pushing. This results in what appears to be a door being forced open) This door happens to be a mere 10 feet away from where I was sitting watching TV. I pivoted quickly to face the door while my hand went instantly to my gun (below my shirt) I sat there staring face to face with this person in the doorway until he finally broke the silence and said that he didn't mean to scare me and that he was the nephew (who happened to show up a day early and at midnight) I kept my hand on the gun through the entire exchange until I felt satisfied that the story was correct. At that point his wife walked up and things started to ease a little bit. It was at this time I realized just how fast my heart was thumping and that I hadn't breathed in what seemed like eternity. About a half hour later (when my heart finally started slowing down) we were all in the kitchen talking about the situation and how he completely startled me. His wife talking to him said "you are lucky nothing got thrown at you." and then he said to me "or you having your hand on a gun or something" Neither of them really knew that I DID indeed have a hand on a gun and I figured it was better to leave that out of the conversation. It just goes to show the importance of making sure of a situation before acting (but being ready for whatever happens) It also taught me a lesson about being prepared wherever I am......I never would have made it to a gun that I had stashed somewhere in the house in as fast as everything went down. The safest place for it is on my person.
    Everything turned out well with a few lessons learned.

    However, the whole situation does bring up a question. How does the fact that I was in somebody else's house affect my level of protection? Obviously, if someone had a weapon and was threatening me with it I could defend myself. However, in this case, what if the nephew had thought I was a burglar? He admitted to not knowing that I was going to be there. (my client said that it was possible that someone [me] may have been there working but never really gave positive answer to the nephew) What if he were to come in thinking I was there to hurt him? The answer is simpler when referring to your own home. I just hope I never get another scare like that in my lifetime......someone else's home or mine.
    ~~~the biggest deficit of the general public is a lack of personal accountability.. I have no one to blame for my actions, regardless of circumstances, except myself and by the same token I can hold no one else responsible for my protection and well being other than myself~~~

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  3. #2
    Member Array crankshop1000's Avatar
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    Castle doctrine...wherever you are legally at is your safety zone.You still need to be in fear for your life to defend yourself and it would have to be a lot more than"he was lookin at me". Chuck.

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    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Agreed, I'd bet my freedom this would fall under Castle Doctrine if that state had such laws on the books.

    No matter what though that would have been a sticky situation if you had shot.
    As to the nephew did he not see your vehicle out front or know that you were going to be there? Did he not notice the lights on where you were seated or at least the flicker of your TV set?
    Not so common sense would dictae that knocking on the door (with the above items being obvious) is the better play than just to enter. As well even if he were to just enter then to announce your presence with a; "Hello! Mr. Cooper it's us, Nephew and The Wife...we're here earlier than expected." would be prudent considering it is the middle of the night and he was arriving at an hour to which he was not expected.

    An easy problem/situation to avoid if only the nephew had been wearing his brain, before hand rather than in kitchen table conversation after almost getting it blown out.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

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    Member Array KellyCooper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Janq View Post
    As to the nephew did he not see your vehicle out front or know that you were going to be there? Did he not notice the lights on where you were seated or at least the flicker of your TV set?

    - Janq
    In this case, it is a shared driveway with one of the neighbors. (more like a shared road and my car could easily have been mistaken for a neighbors. Add to that the fact that the parking pad is at least 100 feet from the door (with a boardwalk leading up....so no leaves rustling). Also, the front of the house has no windows and I don't turn the volume on the tv up too loud so from the outside there was no indication that anyone was home. I cannot fault him at all because, he didn't even know I was going to be there. Just an odd experience.
    ~~~the biggest deficit of the general public is a lack of personal accountability.. I have no one to blame for my actions, regardless of circumstances, except myself and by the same token I can hold no one else responsible for my protection and well being other than myself~~~

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    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    Let me see if I understand--you were staying in a customer's house overnight (assuming you had permission, thus, you had a right to be there)....then the nephew of the owner showed up (assuming HE had permission, and thus, had a right to be there).

    Tough call...especially if the nephew decided he wanted to be an a$$ or think you were a burglar--he might be justified in defending himself.

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    I think you did pretty good, with the possible exception of not seeing/hearing their vehicle as they approached.

    You were NOT in your own home, where the possibility of unannounced visitors would not be expected (& would be dealt with differently). You were in someone else's home. When in someone else's abode you do act differently. In this case, it was someone you probably don't know very well.........so more caution would be required. This one was a little different since they just opened the door.

    I know when we child-sit for my god-daughters at their home, I am still vigilant, but I am friendlier to people who come to the door (they live in a subdivision) than I am at home. At home I don't want visitors unless they are invited!........hence the name of the farm!

    You have to behave according to your surroundings.
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith

    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper

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    Member Array KellyCooper's Avatar
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    I am somewhat new to this board, but I have posted a fair amount as to my own motivations for doing what I do. This may be somewhat foreign to a lot of people on here but it was not until recently that I felt my life was even worth defending. Since that point I have been modifying my life in virtually all aspects in order to make sure that I do just that. There are however some things that are harder to quit than others. Smoking for me is one of them. I will eventually tackle this as I have tackled the many other issues in my life. But on a side note, there is a big difference in making the decision to do something harmful to yourself (smoking) and someone else forcing their decision to harm you onto you.
    ~~~the biggest deficit of the general public is a lack of personal accountability.. I have no one to blame for my actions, regardless of circumstances, except myself and by the same token I can hold no one else responsible for my protection and well being other than myself~~~

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    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    Glad everything worked out ok. Your situation does raise interesting questions. I would check the exact wording on your states castle doctrine law. Some of the older versions were that you had no duty to retreat in your own home, but you did have a duty to retreat elsewhere. Most of the newer versions I have heard of are sometimes refered to as a "stand your ground" where you have no duty to retreat from any place you have the right to be. Depending on the wording you could be morally right but legally wrong.

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