Ep. 19 Should I Shoot? Software Upgrade

Custom home door with brass handle.

Editor’s Note: The following is a post from Sammy Reese, a former Marine Corps Artillery Officer and retired police officer from California. He is a part-time range master for the police department he retired from as well as a life-long martial artist and combatives coach.

Check out the last five episodes in this series:

Sometimes, defending the castle has more to do with software than hardware. What I’m saying is it doesn’t matter what type of guns you have or how good the alarm system is, if everyone who lives in your house isn’t on board with the security plan, bad things can happen.

A good buddy of mine lives in the nice part of town. It’s all newer homes and, for the most part, everyone knows everyone and they all get along. If anyone were to drive through the neighborhood, they would agree they are in the nice part of town.

He was home on a Friday upstairs in his office while the kids were playing downstairs. He didn’t hear the knock at the door, but his 7-year-old son did and he opened the door to see a 20-something white male who asked if his parents were home. Before the boy could answer, the bad guy pushed past the little boy who was now screaming at the man. By the time dad figured out something was wrong, the family German Shepard and the bad guy had a meeting in the entryway. The dog took a big chunk out of the bad guy, who was now running for his life down the street and leaving quite a blood trail. (Yes, the dog got a nice steak dinner for doing his job.)

Sometimes, luck combined with some proper planning is all we have to depend on. In this case, the dog had been trained in basic protection work and takes the protection of the pack very seriously. The dog is usually upstairs lying on his bed in the office. On that day, he chose the cool tile in the entryway. My buddy is a gun guy and has several in the house for defending the castle. He told me he came out of the office unarmed because he thought one of the kids had been hurt. He never heard the knock at the door. He keeps a handgun in the office, but in this case, he never retrieved it.

After the incident, we talked at length about how to better prepare the family both in and out of the house. A camera system covering the perimeter and interior was added to the Christmas list. The kids already knew they shouldn’t talk to strangers and should let an adult know when someone they don’t know comes around. The boys and his wife all know now if someone comes to the door, they don’t immediately open it. The kids get Mom or Dad and the adults use the new wide-angle peephole to look outside. They talk to people through the door if they don’t know who they are. Some might say it’s rude, but for the security of the family, the neighbor or salesmen will get over it.

The kids and wife know he has guns to protect them, and now his wife is getting proficient at using them. She’s a great student and has embraced her role as “mama bear” to protect her family with a firearm if need be. The kids shoot with dad, but now they are a part of the plan and are included in the “what if?” questions they drill on as a family.

It’s never too late to get the whole family on board with a security plan. Is your crew ready?

For more critical information on the use of deadly force and other firearms and self-defense topics, visit www.uscca.com/GunsAmerica.

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

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  • JJ357 September 11, 2016, 2:11 am

    Everyday in America a home is broken into every 22 seconds, that’s 4320 times per day. Statistics show 13% of those homes have people inside. That’s a minimum of 432 homes everyday where ordinary Americans sitting on their couch are suddenly thrust into a life or death struggle. Notice how the mass media never shows any of these positive gun stories. 1.2 million times a year Americans use their Firearms defensively to save their own lives. That’s a Clinton Administration study so it’s probably much higher than what they reported. I am one of those people who used my firearm to save myself. 8 gang members surrounded me in a hotel parking lot when I was on a business trip. I could tell it was going to be trouble so I placed my firearm in a small paperbag and then held onto it inside the bag. The gang members approached yelling I F ed up and what was I doing there etc. Then one by one they slowly noticed my hand inside this paper bag and their whole attitude changed. They told me they didn’t want any problems and walked off. I would for sure have been severely beaten and robbed perhaps killed if it wasn’t for my firearm.

  • pete September 9, 2016, 11:30 am

    Answering the door does not mean OPENING the door! Everyone needs to know that. It’s not rude to NOT open the door to strangers and just speak through the door. That’s the whole idea behind those old speak easy doors. Often times its a bad idea to not answer the door since the bad guy is just trying to find out if anyone is home. A ‘no soliciting’ sign is a must in my opinion to take away the vast majority of cold call excuses. Then always at least think about calling 911 about the suspicious person going door to door. The cops can’t decide if it warrants attention if they don’t know what’s up. I love hearing how excited the K9 dog gets on the radio when it knows it’s on the way to a call-out!

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