What if you knew your home would be broken into next week? What would you do to prevent this from happening?
Imagine you are sound asleep in your bed and the lights come on and a man is standing over you with a gun and he’s yelling and screaming at you to do what he says.
Now here are the FBI statistics on Home Invasions, just to give you a quick refresher course:
28,000 Property Crimes occur every day (1 every 3 seconds).
8,640 Burglaries occur every day (1 every 10 seconds).
4,320 Violent Crimes occur every day (1 every 20 seconds).
2,468 Grave Assaults every day (1 every 35 seconds).
1,440 Robberies occur every day (1 every minute).
720 Forcible Rapes occur every day (1 every 2 minutes).
1 out of 5 homes will experience a break-in or home invasion.
So let’s focus on just the Home Invasion statistics:
8,000 Home Invasions occur every day.
48% of the time the victims are injured.
38% of the time the victims are physically assaulted (really badly beaten up).
60% of the time at least one female is raped.
77% of the time the victims are under the age of 60.
68% of the time the victims Do Not Know their attackers.
11% the victims do know their attackers.
So what do you do?
Well first I’d use the Security Circle or Cycle, keep in mind there are several variations of the Security Circle/Cycle:
Security = Deterrence, Detection, (Delay and Response) and Deny the Criminal Success
So how does this work for you?
Deterrence = Things like having a neat and clean yard, locking your cars, trees and shrubs trimmed, a fence around your property, lights that work and parking your cars close to the house are a great start. Those little cameras security systems are awesome as most have limited night vision capability. Inside night lights both as a safety feature and as a deterrent are also a good idea. However there is one very important thing you can do and that’s to get a small yappy dog.
Detection = Motion activated lights, motion activated cameras, a small yappy dog, being alert, having the family be alert, having alert neighbors, having an alarm system. The goal is to announce the presence of people when they arrive on your property.
Deter and Detect = Small yappy dogs.
Why small and yappy you ask? Well, small dogs are cheaper to keep and maintain and yappy dogs tend to alert their family that someone is snooping around or that something is wrong. Why small? Less chance of a horrific injury to a small child for starters, plus many insurance policies charge you more for some breeds of larger dogs. Criminals hate small yappy dogs as their barking draws attention to them and their criminal activities. A small yappy dog can give you a warning before the “bad guys” kick in your door.
A good guide to remember is if the dog starts barking and within 30 seconds or less your door is being kicked in, they are professionals and they’ve done this before.
Thirty seconds to two minutes of barking means they are amateurs and while equally dangerous, they are more disorganized in actions and in their “thought processes”.
The time they waste getting through the door means you have more time to call 911 and either run out the back door or barricade yourselves in a room while waiting for the police (personally I’d run, which is what most executive protection specialists would recommend and avoid the fight completely, especially if you have children!).
Delay/Response = Doors, small yappy dogs, have a family plan that’s rehearsed, cordless phones placed around the house. Solid doors and good door locks, to include chain or swinging arm bars are also very important as they buy you time to react. Motion activated lights on the porches and near your cars are good because they startle “bad guys” when they suddenly pop on.
Response = When I’ve worked with people in the past I explain the most important things you can do to keep yourself safe is to lock your doors and wear “normal” shoes in your house. Now someone always argues and says they can run faster barefoot and I ask them if they can run over broken glass and gravel as that’s what’s on most roads and they don’t have a reply. Remember Darwinism also applies to home invasions too.
Children and teenagers: Remember the “Freeze, Fight or Flight” response? Guess which response children and teenagers normally use…”Freeze”, yeah the worst one, this means you will have to drag and push them where you need them to go. Also they will normally fight you to stay where they are as their brains can’t process the urgency of the situation. My best advice is to train your children from the beginning to be able to react properly in emergencies. Use the same basic plan as your fire plan and always have a meet up location so the family can re-assemble.
Deny = Locked doors (again), the angry yappy dog attacking, you being on the phone with the police, your valuables (normally) hidden and or locked up. Then finally you with your legally owned firearm, why a firearm, well when seconds count, the police are minutes away.
So here is how it would go down
Yappy dog goes nuts, your motion detecting porch light goes off and then you hear people busting down your door. It takes a couple of hits before the door flies open, so you’re grabbing the phone and dialing 911 and your kids and heading out the back door. While you’re on the phone with 911, you’re running out the back door as most cordless phones have a range of about 100 feet from the base unit, but test it before hand to be sure. Worst case your kids are dragging stuff in front of the back bedroom door. It’s your choice to run or fight, just don’t freeze, but it’s your family and your choice to make in all of about 5 seconds, which is why you need to practice it just like a fire drill or a medical emergency. If they follow you outside or come through the bedroom door then shoot them.
Did you notice I didn’t say shoot through the front door?
I teach this for a reason: 99% of the time it’s a family member that startles the dog or is “playing around” and trying to scare the family. So don’t shoot through the front door, you could hit Junior!
Two other quick thoughts!
1. Kids tend to get between the good guys and bad guys in a shoot-out, so herd them out of the room. Normally home invasions are two or more people so a gun fight in your living room should be your last option as you’re outgunned, surprised, outmanned and your children are in the line of fire.
2. The “Scared Monkey” concept, where startled children run and grab the nearest parent out of fear. The last thing you want is a four year old grabbing your leg while you’re shooting at three men entering your home.