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Old 08-20-2013, 08:54 AM
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Default "Bump" in the night...



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I live in a rural setting, we have pretty regular bumps and other suspicious noises. Add a few kids into the mix and it is a rare night that I get all the way through without some interruption. Being the guy that I suspect many of us are I can't go back to sleep until my mind is at ease and HAVE to go investigate just to make sure.

So my question is this: When you get up to investigate a "bump" do you take your home defense weapon or not? I tend to not and come back to my bedroom to retrieve my weapon if need be. Thankfully only had to once (BIG bear on the front porch). With kids I tend to not want to be running around the house hopped up on adrenaline with a loaded firearm. I do train often, maintain trigger/barrel discipline, and would always be sure of what is beyond my target or on the other side of the wall behind him. What do you all think?

Edit: One important note I left out is our German Shepherd who is on patrol. Having her gives me a lot of peace of mind being out without my weapon.
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:02 AM
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I am of the "Better to have it and not need it..." Philosophy, Myself.
Old 08-20-2013, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpm View Post
I live in a rural setting, we have pretty regular bumps and other suspicious noises. Add a few kids into the mix and it is a rare night that I get all the way through without some interruption. Being the guy that I suspect many of us are I can't go back to sleep until my mind is at ease and HAVE to go investigate just to make sure.

So my question is this: When you get up to investigate a "bump" do you take your home defense weapon or not? I tend to not and come back to my bedroom to retrieve my weapon if need be. Thankfully only had to once (BIG bear on the front porch). With kids I tend to not want to be running around the house hopped up on adrenaline with a loaded firearm. I do train often, maintain trigger/barrel discipline, and would always be sure of what is beyond my target or on the other side of the wall behind him. What do you all think?
I have an alarm system so unless that has gone off, I am confident that no one is within my home.

I also have motion sensor lights around my perimeter.

If either one of those has gone off I grab my sidearm/shotgun; if they have not, generally I don't carry it. This means they are probable fifteen to twenty feet away from the perimeter of my house, so far enough away for me to retreat if I have to .
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:07 AM
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Bumps in the night rarely wake me up or alarm me, but they indirectly result in me being awakened and investigating ... which I suspect is a common situation.

One time, I was sure I heard a break-in. I took the shotgun. But it turned out to be nothing. Maybe trees against a window, not sure.

Most of the time, I carry my little revolver "just in case." If it turns out somebody was just up getting a snack or something like that, they don't know I had a weapon at all.
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:12 AM
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I didn't, now I do.

There was a member on this board who was violently assaulted in her own home. She kept a pistol in her purse, which was across the room when the bad guys kicked the door in. She was able to get to it after a while, but she vowed to keep her pistol on her person at all times from that point forward. Her brother was beat quite badly, if I recall correctly.

Your weapon, if it is out of your grasp, does you no good. You don't have to draw it, you don't have to point it, but you should have it on you.

My 2 cents.
Old 08-20-2013, 09:20 AM
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while I am older and now an empty nester, we frequently have grandkids and other family over for visits so I still keep my mindset accordingly.
But I hear ya and cudos on training, good discipline, etc.
Over the years it was my wife who was more likely to hear the bumps and be awake at night..if she thought it was serious I'd get the elbow.
to help keep from having heart failure from too many nightly elbows I installed a good security system that include motion floods all around the house and cameras both in and outdoors...the outdoor units include a couple of PTZ...all this is controllable from a mouse and large monitor that is on her nightstand..if she hears a bump she can just roll over, look at all the cameras, even pan around to check out other areas...if there is something outside moving, then it has also activated the motion floodlights so she knows what to look for first.
the house itself has an alarm system and our bedrooms are upstairs so an alarm means entry downstairs gives us a couple extra seconds...
I also have a hardened bedroom door that is locked when we go to bed.
bad guys can take whatever they want downstairs while the alarms blairs. there's nothing down there worth risking my life, or even taking their lives over. what they can't do is come up my stair case...that lets me know they are intending bad...at that point, we are already well awake from the bump, the alarm noise, the dogs, and verification on video...all I need to do is wait behind my hardended door with shotgun in hand (wife hunkered down on far side of bed with her 9mm and monitoring the cameras and on the phone with the security company (we just did this at 4am about 3 months ago)
either the crooks scram, or the cops arrive or they try to break down my door..any of the above is an acceptable answer that I am prepared for.

to your OP, I make sure I am well awake if I decide to search the house...which I would only do when grand kids are over...and that would only be upstairs to confirm they are in bed/bathroom...and we would already know if it's a bump or a threat before I grab a gun.

and yes, we living the in the country and over the past 10 years, we've had several breakins on our street, in our trucks, neighbors, in our garage and the most recent was a failed alarm fob that set off the system at 4am...and poppa was up on his feet with 12ga in hand pretty darn quick...as in, they wouldn't have been able to climb my stairs before I was up and racked.
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:23 AM
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One important note I left out is our German Shepherd who is on patrol. Having her gives me a lot of peace of mind being out without my weapon.
Old 08-20-2013, 09:25 AM
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My situation is virtually identical to yours.
I generally investigate unarmed. We have two dogs as well and I hope that if what I'm investigating is more than just a bump or one of the kids, the dogs will be doing more than snoring.
My wife did scold me once for not taking my shotgun to answer the door at 3:00 AM one morning. Our teenage son was out spending the night at a friends house, did something stupid and hurt himself, and the mom had dropped him off in our driveway because she didn't want to deal with it.
Where we are, I am just more concerned I guess with "accidents" happening during a false alarm. As I said, I also utilize the dogs as an alarm though.
When I investigate, I don't turn on lights and I do the peek around the corner thing at all the doorways though.
I've scared my son lots of times in the middle of the night when I've intercepted him in the dark as he came into our hall heading for the pantry at 2:00AM. His bedroom door wakes me up from the other end of the house and then I meet him as I'm peeking into the kitchen around the hall corner and he's headed for food. Who eats at 2 AM? First couple of times he scared me too popping around the corner as I got there. If I'd had the shotgun, he'd likely got butt-stroked or whacked in the head with the barrel.
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:26 AM
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Always have it with you. As you mentioned, trigger/emotion control is a must.
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:31 AM
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Just up twice last night. Weapon and light in my hand as I investigate. Step one, confirm the location of all my loved ones. Step two, make sure my son who has moved out is not making a surprise visit. Step three, follow up on the noise.

Bad people are not going to wait for you to go back and get your weapon.
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:37 AM
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We have a dog and motion sensor lights. We don't have an alarm system and I really don't want one. I know the dog's bark. She has different barks for various situations. I can tell when she is barking at an armadillo or other critter she simply feels needs to know that this is her yard and they are not allowed. She has another bark for something she feels is threatening and she has been conditioned to bark at that, then come into the house via doggy door and come to us and wake us up. So far, no false alarms. It's been everything from people walking at night to coyotes in the yard but each time, she has correctly figured out that this was something she needed to inform us on. I don't know what we'd do without her. I don't want to think about the day she is too old to be the alpha and we have to start over with training another dog. As far as weapons, the hubby takes his side arm and I take a long gun to investigate. Weapons are strategically positioned all over the house. No room except the bathrooms are free of weapons somewhere. Not in plain view, mind you, but there.

We are about to be grandparents so I guess for the first few years, until the wee one is big enough to learn about weapon safety, we'll have to re-evaluate our blueprint...but, not by much. I was reared with guns in every room and so were my children. So, the grandkids will also know that Memaw and Pepaw's house has guns, loaded and ready, at all times.
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:43 AM
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Be careful of the grandkids' friends when visiting. Had a friend one time go with me to visit my grandparents. He left the bathroom the wrong way through my grandparents' bedroom even though he had been told that room was off limits and came out with the "cool pistol that looked real" that hung on grandpa's bedpost. Boy was that exciting for about a second and a half. He was about 11 years old and grew up in the country too, you'd think he would have known better, but...

You just never know what might happen when you have company over.
Old 08-20-2013, 09:46 AM
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I have to get up and investigate noises a few times each night. For me it is not the worry of an intruder it is the worry of one of the horses running loose or the hogs running loose or the goats and sheep being attacked etc.

I seldom grab a weapon unless I know there is a predator close, last night was pretty bad with the full moon, the hogs never went to sleep and made loud noises most of the night. Which made the dogs bark all night, which made the horses a bit antsy etc etc etc. People are the least of my concern at night time, I can walk right up next to them at night and they have no idea I am even there.... lol that has led to some funny incidents.

I have been doing this for twenty years though, I am used to it and actually quite enjoy my night time walks. Probably a bit easier for me though, I sleep fully clothed and ready to go, having to put on clothing and boots takes to long. My wife on the other hand gets a bit tired of being woke up all night long by my getting up and going outside.
Old 08-20-2013, 10:01 AM
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I always carry a weapon when I go out. I'm in a very rural mountainous setting and theres very little chance of an intruder, but do none-the-less. Alto, we do have bear, coyotes, wild pigs, etc all around me.

Just 2 weeks ago, I had 2 dogs bitten by a posionous snake. $1200 later, their both fine now. A week later(1 week ago) one of those same dogs was bitten right in front of me AGAIN! ..and only 5 yards from the house as I as pulling weeds from the garden. There laid a small Copperhead a yard away. So I went and got the 22/45 and luckily found it and killed it. Well, THAT night at 1:30am, I hear the other 3 dogs(because the one bit that day was at the vet for the night) going crazy in the driveway. I get up and go out with an SR1911 (loaded with Golden Saber 185gr +Ps) in my undies and sandels only. There lies another larger Copperhead 1 yard in front of our main steps into the house. I instantly aimed and shot, because otherwise, I was going to have a couple more dogs bit.

The 2 mentioned copperheads. 2 in 10 hours not 5 yards from the house.

22/45 slaying lol

And the 1911 slaying. Note hole in the ground where his head was. funny thing was, the wife slept thru it all. My ears rang for 2 days afterward.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsutter View Post
Be careful of the grandkids' friends when visiting. Had a friend one time go with me to visit my grandparents. He left the bathroom the wrong way through my grandparents' bedroom even though he had been told that room was off limits and came out with the "cool pistol that looked real" that hung on grandpa's bedpost. Boy was that exciting for about a second and a half. He was about 11 years old and grew up in the country too, you'd think he would have known better, but...

You just never know what might happen when you have company over.
Yep. I hear ya. Until the wee ones get old enough to be taught, we'll be very diligent about weapons. Hubby is thinking of putting most of the long guns in the safe, then putting the handguns up past his little reach (and not where he can climb to...seen that one before). Others would be unloaded with ammo hidden but close by. I can tell you from day one of the little one walking about, there will be a "no touch" rule that will be enforced with spanking if needed. We are Southern and we do spank children when they are little. You cannot teach a little person about dangerous behavior with time outs. Swat their little butts and and they see immediately that whatever they are doing is the absolute wrong thing to do. lol. OK, I think I've high jacked the thread enough...back to the original programming.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:16 AM
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I spent too many years cleaning up and investigating break ins, home invasions and checking out things that go bump in the night to ever, ever do so without a firearm.

Too many times I have been awoken by someone wondering where their car, brother or stash had been taken. And having more than one person who still resents what I used to do, I tend to be rather cautious.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:20 AM
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I always carry a big bore handgun at least with me when I go bump hunting in the night. That way I can put it in a holster or in the waistband if I want to do so. That way if I do find something I don't have to do "the hurry up and run dance to get something when I should of already had something with me dance."
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:35 AM
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The 9mm or .40 is in the headboard and go with me if I hear something at night. The 12 gauge is on the shelf in the closet if it is a really big bump, also have the Draco with several extra magazines ...thinking of turning the master closet into a safe room.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:43 AM
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could we please stop calling it a weapon? It just shows us in a bad light. It also is not good to tell the cops when they show up after you need to use your "Weapon"
Yes officer I heard a noise then I saw him and killed him with my "Weapon"
or
Yes officer I heard a noise then I saw him and Shot him with my shotgun, pistol, rifle.
Trust me it is all in the words you use THAT ARE USED AGAINST YOU.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:48 AM
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Just say, I feared for my life or the lives of my loved ones and I stopped the threat. Then say "I don't wish to say anything more until I have a lawyer present." Just a word to the wise. For other great tips go to the USCCA website.

I also suggest becoming a member as I know I don't have $200K to spend if I have to shoot someone. It is like car insurance, you get it because you might have an accident not because you are going out to have one, you get USCCA insurance because you already awknowledge you may have to shoot someone (or else why have the weapon for home defense?) so having insurance to keep your defense costs from bankrupting you just makes sense.
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