Last Monday, in the a.m. hours, a Tennessee woman used her firearms to scare off five alleged burglars, one of which had forced his way into her residence.
“We were asleep, and I thought I had heard something but I wasn’t for sure,” the woman, Elsie Lee, told WBBJ. “I thought I was just dreaming something, and then I heard a big bang again.”
After realizing this wasn’t a dream, the mother took action.
“I got up and came running through the hallway and my gun was sitting on the dog cage, and the guy was standing in the kitchen. He had just busted my door open,” Lee said.
Lee confronted the man with a .45-caliber handgun and a shotgun.
“I put the gun in his face and asked him if there was something I could do for him, and he was gone just that quick,” Lee said. “I chased him out the back door trying to look at the tag number on the car, something I could describe other than just him.”
Police later arrested five men in connection with the incident: Quentin Childress, 20, of Jackson, Jaylon Chiles, 18, of Biloxi, Miss., Amar Johnson, 21, of Jackson, Kendrick McMullin, 19, of Jackson, and a juvenile male.
All of them are facing charges of aggravated burglary. While this type of incident can happen throughout the year, Madison County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Tom Mape explained that crime increases during the summer months.
“It’s that time of the year where kids will be getting out of school, bored with nothing to do, so you will see a lot more activities, especially burglaries,” Mapes said.
It’s true. Crime statistics from the U.S. Dept. of Justice indicate that instances of burglary, motor vehicle theft, and household larceny are all higher in the summer than the winter, spring, and fall. The stats examined were from the years 1993 to 2010.
What that actually shakes out to is that compared to summer rates, household property victimization rates (which includes the three aforementioned categories: burglary, vehicle theft, and larceny) are 7 percent lower in the winter, 8 percent lower in the spring and 3 percent lower in the fall.
The shift in crime from season to season is not huge but, at the same time, if you haven’t thought seriously about defending your castle or you haven’t updated your home defensive plan in years, now is as good a time as any to get it done.
Obviously, it starts with a plan. As they say, if you fail to plan you plan to fail. So think about your plan and how all of your home defensive tools integrate within that plan.
Some things to consider: Do you have a home alarm system? Do you have security cameras? Do you have a good relationship with your neighbors (do you look out for one another)? Do you have a dog that acts as a default alarm? Where are your firearms secured (Not to pick on Ms. Lee, but on top of the dog cage is probably not the best place)? Can you access them quickly? What are your children, spouse supposed to do during a break-in? Is there a rallying point? Who calls 911? Do you have an exit strategy? Are you mentally and physically prepared to engage a threat? Have you trained with your firearms in a high-stress situation?
That’s really just the tip of the iceberg. There’s a lot to consider and since everyone’s situation is different, it’s important that one tailor one’s plan to one’s own tools and personal strengthens and weaknesses. Hopefully, you never have to employ your plan but if you do, you’ll be really glad you had one in place.