19 Mar 12
In Denver, CO there have recently been a series of sexual assaults upon women. Attacks have taken place within the victim’s own dwelling, mostly during late evening. Police believe a single individual is responsible.
Of great concern to us is that all attacks share one common motif: Doors where the suspect made entry have all be open, or unlocked!
In order to be guilty of “burglary,” at least in CO, “breaking-and-entering” is not strictly necessary. To qualify for the title, a burglar must only cross the threshold, uninvited, “… with intent to commit a felony.”
However, my advice is this: When a burglary suspect intends to unlawfully enter your home, make it impossible for him to do so without breaking something! When forceful self-defensive actions on your part subsequently become necessary, your case will be a strong one when the perpetrator was compelled to deliberately break something in his effort to illegally enter your house. When the suspect merely waltzes through an open door, or even casually opens an unlocked one, your case will be a good deal weaker!
Of course, reasonable defensive actions (including deadly force) on your part must be taken when necessary in any event, but there is much to be said for deterrence, deterrence that is formidable enough, and conspicuous enough, to make lethal self-defense ultimately unnecessary.
A house whose doors are secured with beefy locks, and windows similarly secured, represents an unattractive target for burglars. Competent electronic security, combined with motion-activated lights around the perimeter, make the dwelling even more unappealing.
A comprehensive security policy is also necessary, a personal policy that dictates all doors and windows are locked at appropriate times. Doors should never be left open/unlocked for more than a few minutes. The rest of the time, they need to be closed and locked, particularly at night. An open door with a fancy lock is no better than a door with no lock!
Likewise, an elaborate electronic security system is of little value when it is never turned on. Your security system can provide protection only when you use it!
With regard to electronic security, when the siren goes off unexpectedly, don’t turn it off right away. Let it wail! That siren is a great deterrent in its own right, and will scare away the vast majority of burglary suspects. You need to give it time to do its work. Don’t automatically assume it is a false alarm!
Remember the four “Ds” of home security: (1) Deter, (2) Detect, (3) Delay, (4) Defend
It is truly said, “The best way to win a war is by reputation!” And, it is also profoundly true that violent crime, effectively deterred before it can take place, is better by far than violent crime that proceeds to the point where it must be halted via gunfire!