I always thought that I was fairly practical...

This is a discussion on I always thought that I was fairly practical... within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Let me set the story. Wife and kids are out of town for Spring break, I have to work (hey, someone's gotta keep us fed). ...

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Thread: I always thought that I was fairly practical...

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array PapaScout's Avatar
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    I always thought that I was fairly practical...

    Let me set the story. Wife and kids are out of town for Spring break, I have to work (hey, someone's gotta keep us fed). I left the house at 6:00 this morning.

    I got home at about 7:00 tonight and noticed the front porch light on. I never turn the porch light on when I leave for work in the mornings.

    Did I call the police? No, I pull my CW (extra mag on my hip), my mini-maglight, and head up the steps to the porch.

    The dining room light, kitchen light, hallway light, were also on. I swept the main floor, upper floor, basement. Nothing missing. Nothing out of place.

    I checked the driveway - mostly rock but some muddy areas looking for unusual tire tracks. No fresh tracks except for my car.

    I must have left the lights on this morning - getting old and senile.

    I was afraid of looking silly by calling the local boys and having them come hold my hand while we checked for monsters under the bed.

    In a real situation my pride may have killed me this evening.

    Thoughts?
    "If you so much as bunny hop I'll cut your heart out!" Billy Bob Thornton in The Last Real Cowboys

    "I carry a gun for the same reason that I carry health insurance and a cell phone - be prepared."

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array tanksoldier's Avatar
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    It's always said "never clear your house", "call the cops", etc, etc...

    I generally agree, IF you're fairly sure that there actually IS a BG around. It's a call you have to make yourself based on how likely you think that somebody actually is there.

    YMMV, but in general an obvious break in (kicked in door, broken window, etc) merits a 911 call. Unlocked door, lights on... anything that you might have done yourself without remembering, merits a careful recon to determine the situation.
    "I am a Soldier. I fight where I am told, and I win where I fight." GEN George S. Patton, Jr.

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    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    An ambiguous situation like this is a tough one. Trying to clear a house by yourself is definitely dangerous, but when the evidence is circumstantial, it's difficult to call in the cavalry when it may be nothing. One possibility in this situation might be to look at your house from the outside for some sign of forced entry (open door, broken window, etc.) before entering. If you see some sign of entry, call the police, otherwise go on it. Of course, if it's dark out, going wandering around in the bushes might not be such a good idea (I'm assuming that it was still light out at 7:00, but without knowing where you are in Indiana, it's hard to tell ).

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    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    Would a burglar turn on the lights?

    I would think a burglar would not turn on all the lights in a house because it would be such a visible warning to a returning homeowner. I would think the burglar would use a flashlight or rely on natural light coming through the window, in order to remain stealthy and not alarm anyone outside the house.

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    VIP Member Array sass20485's Avatar
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    I came home one day to find the front window broken and blinds torn down. I called the cops on my cell phone and waited a few houses down the block. They arrived in short order, entered and checked the house. Nobody there, nothing missing. Turns out the window blinds crashed down, hit the window sill and broke the glass. Felt silly, but SAFE. It certainly had the appearance of a break in. I leave clearing a house to the pro's.

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    VIP Member Array MNBurl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sass20485 View Post
    I came home one day to find the front window broken and blinds torn down. I called the cops on my cell phone and waited a few houses down the block. They arrived in short order, entered and checked the house. Nobody there, nothing missing. Turns out the window blinds crashed down, hit the window sill and broke the glass. Felt silly, but SAFE. It certainly had the appearance of a break in. I leave clearing a house to the pro's.
    I would also do the same if I found an obvious break in signs.
    MNBurl

    "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking" - George S. Patton.

  8. #7
    Senior Member Array PapaScout's Avatar
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    Sorry, guys. Just checking the thread this morning and realized that I dropped it in Carried Issues and Discussions. Mods, please move if it offends.

    If the door had been kicked in or some other obvious signs of this being a real situation I agree. I would have called 911 with a clear conscience and waited outside.

    Great suggestion to walk the house first to look for other signs of forced entry. Never even occured to me to do so before I entered but I bet it will next time. ;-) Thanks.

    I also agree that a burglar probably wouldn't use the house lighting, but who knows what some wacked-out crack-head looking for hidden cash, drugs, or weapons would or wouldn't do?

    All in all, I guess it was a good "training" exercise for me. Not in professional house clearing but in getting the adrenalin pumping and seeing what decisions I make under pressure.
    "If you so much as bunny hop I'll cut your heart out!" Billy Bob Thornton in The Last Real Cowboys

    "I carry a gun for the same reason that I carry health insurance and a cell phone - be prepared."

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    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    Since there were no obvious signs that someone unauthorized was in your home, I think you handled it quite well.

    Like many others, I too would call the police if there was a sign that someone had broken in. A kicked in door or a door just standing open or partly open for example. A broken window, or a window that had been forced in some way.

    But just for lights, I would also clear the house.

    Funny story for you, we had a Siamese cat many years ago when we lived in Charleston SC. He was a very bright cat and did some interesting things. He liked to look out the windows but never wanted to go outside being content to be a house cat.
    He must have watched me stick my finger through the mini blinds one day and pull them down to look out the window because we pulled up into the drive one evening and I saw what I thought was the finger of a black man poked through the blinds pulling them down and looking out at us. As soon as I saw it, the "finger" pulled out of the blinds and they snapped shut! I of course thought someone was in our house. So we called the police who showed up very quickly, they unlocked the front door with the key we gave them and cleared the house. No one was inside.
    Shaken up a bit we went in and after about a half hour of nervous looking around, I watched as the cat jumped up on the back of the couch and stuck his very dark brown paw through the blinds and pull them down enough for him to see through them into the front yard / street area! I was floored and told my wife to look at the cat.
    We both stood there laughing like crazy releasing all the pent up nervous energy the perceived break in had caused!

    Anyway, I think you did fine, don't let it bother you.
    ,=====o00o _
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  10. #9
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    I agree with you, your pride very well may have killed you if not potentially in deep criminal & civil court waters.
    Call the cops as sweeping homes and investigating potential danger is their job.

    For example; http://www.combatcarry.com/vbulletin...ad.php?t=22788

    - 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

  11. #10
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pogo2 View Post
    I would think a burglar would not turn on all the lights in a house because it would be such a visible warning to a returning homeowner. I would think the burglar would use a flashlight or rely on natural light coming through the window, in order to remain stealthy and not alarm anyone outside the house.
    Yes, they would.

    Check ClaytonCramer for recent examples of this.
    IIRC I've seen three such instances reported over the last 4 to 6 mos. where either homeowners or neighbors have seen homes with lights on that normally are not and found that to be a clue toward an ongoing burglary.

    Street criminals are not all that bright and they tend to take advantage of opportunity.

    - 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

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array packinnova's Avatar
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    Sounds like you did alright. Although I may answer differently if the Front door was open or window damaged etc... I found myself in an interesting similar scenario last year, but the house had actually been entered. The kicker was that I was already inside the house before I noticed something was awry. I had come in from work via the FRONT door, got to the back hallway and realized the BACK door was open. I didn't have a choice at that point as I was already in the house. I cleared myself a safe pass back out the front and used the cell to call the local LEO's. It all depends on your awareness and whether or not you suspect something before you go in. Once you're already in though...not much choice.
    "My God David, We're a Civilized society."

    "Sure, As long as the machines are workin' and you can call 911. But you take those things away, you throw people in the dark, and you scare the crap out of them; no more rules...You'll see how primitive they can get."
    -The Mist (2007)

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    I also think you did what I would do. Unless I saw evidence of a break-in, then I'd back off and call.

    It’s only my opinion but… I think the reality of the potential legal nightmare can't be stressed enough. The use of deadly force isn't so much a matter of our rights as it is a matter of our absolute last resort or only option.

    I think any person who has been through that hell would have rather seen their house looted while they waited for the police in hind-sight!

    That gun clears leather very quickly and if you need it, you need it! But the aftermath can take years to resolve at a tremendous cost!
    ALWAYS carry! - NEVER tell!

    "A superior Operator is best defined as someone who uses his superior
    judgement to keep himself out of situations that would require a display of his
    superior skills."

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    Senior Member Array PapaScout's Avatar
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    Thank you to the recent posts regarding liability after a potential shoot.

    Being that my family was not home the only real problem was that I couldn't comfortably use the house until it had been checked by me or others.

    I guess it became a potential life/death situation only when I willingly entered the house, escalating the situation dramatically.

    Again, it comes down to weighing the risk. Do I have reason to believe that someone has entered my house? Or do I believe it to be due to more mundane causes like a forgetful family member - myself included.
    "If you so much as bunny hop I'll cut your heart out!" Billy Bob Thornton in The Last Real Cowboys

    "I carry a gun for the same reason that I carry health insurance and a cell phone - be prepared."

  15. #14
    Senior Member Array MilitaryPower's Avatar
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    Get a better flashlight. I recommend the Fenix L2D CE. Same size at the Mini-Mag with more lumens than MOST Surefires.
    Gun control can be blamed in part for allowing 9/11 to happen.
    "Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum" (Latin)- "If you want peace, prepare for war".

  16. #15
    Senior Member Array Timmy Jimmy's Avatar
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    Papa

    You did good even noticing the porch light was on I would not have even noticed.

    And can somebody tell me what "IIRC" means??
    Timmy Jimmy

    If it is not in the US Constitution then the Federal Government should not be doing it.

    "Carrying a gun is a social responsibility."

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