Shoot first and ask questions later?

This is a discussion on Shoot first and ask questions later? within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Is there a situation when you would shoot first and ask questions later? Say someone broke down your door in the early afternoon, not the ...

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Thread: Shoot first and ask questions later?

  1. #1
    Ex Member Array HollowpointHank's Avatar
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    Shoot first and ask questions later?

    Is there a situation when you would shoot first and ask questions later? Say someone broke down your door in the early afternoon, not the normal time for a breakin, do you say "who are you?" or do you let fly with hot lead? Say the intruder were a bounty hunter who got the wrong house. They don't have to announce or identify. They can just bust in. Do you have the right to shoot and kill them without knowing? What say ye?

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array Euclidean's Avatar
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    Well if someone not wearing a police uniform is pointing a deadly weapon at me or someone else, that's pretty much a shoot first proposition. Of course you could design thousands of defeatist, out in left field scenarios where this would have bad consequences, but if someone has a tire iron coming my way, it's go time.

    Honestly, I have nothing against bounty hunters as they serve a useful purpose and it's honest work, but if you're such a piss poor Bounty Hunter you're breaking down my door I don't think there's a jury in the world that will convict me if I shoot you when you didn't announce yourself. I've spoken to some Bounty Hunters who were the real deal and I don't think any of them would do something that stupid. Remember also that what Bounty Hunters do is quasi-illegal in a lot of ways. That's not to imply bounty hunting is bad or should be punished, just that they operate outside any legal authority and have no legal authority.

  4. #3
    Ex Member Array HollowpointHank's Avatar
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    I see your point. I have heard of bounty hunters going into the wrong house before though. What if the intruder were a jealous boyfriend who thought you were someone else? Say he had no weapon save his fists. Do you shoot him first or try to reason with him and convince him you are not who he thinks you are?

  5. #4
    Member Array joe/OH's Avatar
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    Depends on the range once I have the gun in my hands. I'll give anyone a fair chance to run if I or my family is not in any immediate danger. I really don't want the headache of a civil suit and lawyer fees - which will happen no matter how justified you are. If they have a gun and no police uniform, lead is flying. If they are close with a knife or other weapon, I'm letting loose. Just not worth the risk. If that means you go to jail because you didn't 'attempt to retreat' - well at least your family is still alive.

  6. #5
    VIP Member Array Euclidean's Avatar
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    Well that is another situation. If he has no weapon in hand, odds are I'm going to warn him first. I do live in a small space but I do have an organied plan of retreat. I can easily fall back twice and put plenty of obstacles between him and me.

    If he just won't quit coming, he's obviously trying to hurt or kill me. The thing is, is there a good reason to break into some random person's house and threaten them with physical harm of any sort? Surely most of us can be more reasonable than that.

    I'm just not sympathetic to these sob stories I've heard on occassion. "Boo hoo the intruder was unarmed and he just wanted to take some jewelry..." My thinking is, why are the same people who criticize the Castle Doctrine the same people who would be outraged if someone broke into their home while they were in it and stole their microwave oven?

    But let's take your question and turn it around. Should you ever rush into someone's living space in such a manner?

    Now I can see how this could become an interesting problem in my apartment situation. See I have often wondered if I should get involved if I hear a scream or a cry or a gunshot from a neighboring unit. What if the woman next door to me yells "Oh God somebody help me please he's trying to kill me!" at the top of her lungs and I break down her front door and run in there ready to shoot something. Doing that is quite stupid. I don't know the situation, I don't know who the good guys are, and I might have taken the cry for help out of context and wind up getting shot myself.

    However could I ignore such a thing in good conscience? I submit that I could not. I would of course notify law enforcement immediately, but when someone needs help right now and you're the only one there, you're going to feel awful when you find out that woman was strangled to death in the two minutes it took for the police to get there. Sure you might not have made the difference, but do you know that?

  7. #6
    Senior Member Array CombatEffective's Avatar
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    If someone has forcibly entered my home I don't care what they are wearing or what they are yelling, I'm taking them out. I have reason to fear my life and the life of my wife and daughter.
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  8. #7
    Member Array Fjolnirsson's Avatar
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    If someone has forcibly entered my home I don't care what they are wearing or what they are yelling, I'm taking them out. I have reason to fear my life and the life of my wife and daughter.
    Exactly.
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    VIP Member Array Bud White's Avatar
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    +1 On that someone kicks in the door unless they got a nice big thing that says Police on it they probley gonna get shot if theres pleanty of room i will try to give them a chance to run

  10. #9
    Senior Member Array tanksoldier's Avatar
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    Unless it's an announced warrant search anybody busting down my door at any hour is going to get a donation of .357/ 12g. There's no reason for the cops to be service a no-knock warrant on me, or any warrant really... but at least in an announced search I'd know for sure it was really the cops.

    Were I the home-invasion type I might buy one of those vests or windbreakers that say "POLICE" and start screaming abount search warrants, just to confuse my victims. If the cops got the wrong house, that's their problem. I can see where this culd cause major problems, but I'd rather have shot at the cops than not shot at a home invader. Anyway, I consider that such a low probability that it probably isn't worth worrying about... if it happens the universe is just out to get you anyway.

    Here in Colorado we don't have to retreat, they call it the "make my day law"... anybody who enters your house with the intent to commit a crime therein is a valid target, even unarmed. I'd give an unarmed guy the chance to surrender if I could, but it's 0300 and the door busts off the hinges? He's in trouble.

    God forbid it ever happens.
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  11. #10
    Distinguished Member Array RSSZ's Avatar
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    Devils advocate---- If I was a BG and wanted to slow you down,make you stop and think,give myself an extra margin of safety,etc.,especially if I thought that you might have some firearm expierance, I might just hollar--"police officer,law enforcement,search warrent,"etc. as I kicked down your door in the middle of the night. I have given some serious thought to this but can't figure the easy answer. Especially if the BG is wearing total black. Remember that you only have a fraction of a second to react out of deep sleep.--------

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array Sheldon J's Avatar
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    Police allways announce, and there is no such thing as a perfered time for a break in. Many roberies happen when the BG's think no one is home. Many times they will call to see if someone is home just before they break in. Quite often they will cruse the neighborhood on a regular bassis to get the lay of the land, profileing the going's and commings of the residents. So maybe you were home after droping off the car for service, and bang they kick in the door for a snatch and grab, but oops you are home. With out a second thought confirm your target and shoot.
    "The sword dose not cause the murder, and the maker of the sword dose not bear sin" Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac 11th century

  13. #12
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    Array Tangle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RSSZ
    Devils advocate---- If I was a BG and wanted to slow you down,make you stop and think,give myself an extra margin of safety,etc.,especially if I thought that you might have some firearm expierance, I might just hollar--"police officer,law enforcement,search warrent,"etc. as I kicked down your door in the middle of the night. I have given some serious thought to this but can't figure the easy answer. Especially if the BG is wearing total black. Remember that you only have a fraction of a second to react out of deep sleep.--------
    RSSZ,
    That's one of my nightmare scenarios - a BG impersonating a police officer. And like you, I haven't figured out a solution to this either.

  14. #13
    Senior Member Array CombatEffective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon J
    Police allways announce, and there is no such thing as a perfered time for a break in. Many roberies happen when the BG's think no one is home. Many times they will call to see if someone is home just before they break in. Quite often they will cruse the neighborhood on a regular bassis to get the lay of the land, profileing the going's and commings of the residents. So maybe you were home after droping off the car for service, and bang they kick in the door for a snatch and grab, but oops you are home. With out a second thought confirm your target and shoot.
    True, police have to announce, but there is such an animal as a "no nock" warrant. The announcement doesn't come there until the breech has been made.
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  15. #14
    Senior Member Array Free American's Avatar
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    Here's the solution to the BG impersonating a PO. Body shot, if he's a cop he's got body armor, yeah you shot a cop but he's got some cracked ribs instead of getting dead. If he's a BG he's in a world of hurt. Also, single cops or even 2 or 3 don't serve no knock warrants. They are saved for the specialists who will be toting MP5's and M4's. They will be very easy to discern form the BG's.
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  16. #15
    Senior Member Array CombatEffective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjm5874
    Here's the solution to the BG impersonating a PO. Body shot, if he's a cop he's got body armor, yeah you shot a cop but he's got some cracked ribs instead of getting dead. If he's a BG he's in a world of hurt. Also, single cops or even 2 or 3 don't serve no knock warrants. They are saved for the specialists who will be toting MP5's and M4's. They will be very easy to discern form the BG's.

    Unless of course you are shooting something that will go through body armor. It also means that you will probably be shot dead. There wouldn't be any legal trouble for you that way though.
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