Intruders love the dark and the reason why is obvious: without light, you can’t see them.
At least not clearly.
This natural fact of darkness brings along with it certain risks to the homeowner who wants to defend his “castle” with a firearm.
When the lights are off and the sun is down, your ability to aim and hit a target not only drops dramatically, you can also lose your ability to simply identify WHO your target is before pulling the trigger.
Here’s a tragic example that illustrates the “risks” involved in defending your home at night: recently, I came across a news story about a young man who was at home with his wife, asleep, around 11:30 p.m.
The 32-year-old heard sounds coming from the kitchen area. His wife also heard the noise. The young man pulled out his semiautomatic handgun from his nightstand drawer and left the bedroom to check things out.
At some point, as he crept down the hall toward the kitchen, the young man “saw someone” and fired his weapon.
That “someone” turned out to be his 17-year-old brother.
The homeowner quickly began CPR as soon as he could see who was mistakenly shot while his wife called 911.
However, the teen died an hour later.
What’s scary about this accident is that nobody actually broke into the house. The news report says the teen lived at the home with his older brother and sister-in-law.
His death was due to human error. Caused by the dark.
What a heart-rending story. The kid was a leader in his high school. Active in his church. He fed the homeless and sang in the school chorus.
If you are a gun owner, are you prepared to not make the same mistake?
If you are ever faced with a similar situation where you think there’s an intruder in your home and it’s nighttime, there’s no light on, and you have a firearm for protection, consider taking these precautions to prevent any misjudgements or mistakes that could lead to a tragic death of someone you love…
1. Pay Close Attention
Before zipping down the hall with your firearm ready to blast away, first pause and listen closely to the sounds you are hearing. Listening can give you a lot of information that could save an innocent life.
- Are you hearing more than one person?
- Any talking going on?
- What area of the house are they in?
- Do you hear anything that sounds like property being packed up or taken?
When you pause and listen carefully, these sounds can provide clues that the person you are hearing is someone you know.
2. Stay Inside Your Bedroom
I can’t help but think how the teen who was accidentally shot and killed might still be alive today if his brother had done this…
Even if you have a gun, just because there is an intruder in your home does not mean you have to confront them. Instead, you could lock your bedroom door and even try to barricade your door with heavy furniture if you can.
Additionally, you can continue to put obstacles between you and the intruder by hiding in a closet or bathroom attached to your bedroom. Lock it if possible. Then wait with your firearm ready if necessary.
To make sure you avoid the intruder, do not leave the bedroom until you are completely sure they are gone.
3. Get a Handgun Flashlight
There are many types of tactical flashlights available that can be mounted on just about every type of firearm you can think of.
Going back to our original story, a quality handgun flashlight attached to the young homeowners pistol could have prevented the tragedy.
As a dad, I’ve made sure the handgun I keep close to my bed at night has a Streamlight 1911 handgun flashlight on it, so I can see what I’m pointing at in the dark. This enables me to sleep well at night because I know the light is already on my gun and ready to go.
You never know when one of your kids is sneaking off to the fridge or doing something when they should be sleeping. Thankfully, if I’m ever awakened by strange noises, the darkness will not trip me up. With the handgun flashlight I will be able to determine if the person standing in the dark is someone I love or an intruder.
I hope this information provides you with some solid tips you can use to keep your home safe. Helping people protect themselves and their families is what The Concealed Network is all about.