Wednesday, August 08, 2012

The force field must've been on the fritz.

The scene: A nice subdivision in the 'burbs on a weekday morning in broad daylight.

Dramatis personae: Woman napping on sofa, Sumdood, and Sumdood's accomplice.

The story: A pleasant morning nap gets shattered by the sound of someone smashing at the front door. Our napper vacates the sofa and locks herself in the bathroom, loading the family long gun and dialing 911. The guys get into the house and make off with some money. They jiggle the bathroom doorknob in passing, but don't try to force entry, thereby preventing the day from going really pear-shaped.

The amazing part of the story is how everybody reacted with "I can't believe it happened here!" incredulity, like their magic anti-bad-guy force field had malfunctioned or something.

Just anecdotally, daytime burglaries in the 'burbs seem to be on the rise. It's easy enough to pull into a quiet cul-de-sac lined with McMansions between nine and five when all the DINKs are off picking digital cotton down on the cubicle farm and BAM, BAM, BAM... A few kicked-in front doors and you've had a good day's work in thirty minutes or so.

With a down economy providing more prodding for those of shaky morality to go into the freelance wealth-sharing industry as well as more cubicle dwellers to be napping on sofas of a Thursday morning, look for this scenario to become more, rather than less, common over the next several years.


(This is just one reason it's good to have the kind of neighbors that look out for each other.)

30 comments:

Divemedic said...

"Freelance wealth sharing" - that is some top shelf snark, right there.

Alien said...

“I loaded our rifle and I sat on the bathtub and if they would have come through the door I would have shot them...”

According to the article they had already "come through the door" which was all the justification necessary for proper administration of an educational experience. Perhaps it's time to review just what kind of rifle is the proper one for such festivities. And, just what one does with said rifle. Hiding in the bathroom ain't it.

And people wonder why some us have projectile expellers as part of our daily wardrobe....

Drang said...

Locally, most residential burglaries take place when the local schools are out for lunch.

Woodman said...

Well, if that's the only spare time the teachers have I guess that's when they can supplement their income.

Tango Juliet said...

I am still stunned by the number of people who believe in the power of such force fields.

They probably believe milk comes from the supermarket too.

Jay G said...

There are advantages to living next door to a retired, nosy State Cop. Who happens to be my dad...

GreatBlueWhale said...

But the police are there to protect them!!!
In the last few years, I've had four "intruder" alarms in the middle of the night at my home. Each time, it was a false alarm. Each time, I had no idea what had happened to cause the alarm. The police were called immediately. From the time the 911 call was completed, the least time it took for a police car to stop in front of our house was 28 minutes (longest was 42 minutes). To an active alarm with people in the house. If we order pizza and it takes that long, we get upset.
So, working on the principle that when seconds count, the police are at least a half-hour away, we now have steel on the door jamb, around the hinges and the locks on the door, a very heavy duty deadbolt, and 24/7 lighting on the front door. The back is likewise secured. Windows are pinned through, and physically blocked with 1 inch dowels. Motion lights cover all four sides of our suburban paradise. We have a solid bedroom door with the same setup as the front door.
Some kin saw all this and asked, "Are you paranoid?"
I answered, "You betcha."

GreatBlueWhale said...

Oh, and 3M makes this really neat window film that not only keeps out bunch of the infrarad and UV, but makes it pretty difficult to break out a window and get thru it. Looks good, too.
All the above may be a bit pricey, but what is my wife's safety and life worth?

Robert said...

GBW:

"Are you paranoid?"

"No, I'm prepared."

Firehand said...

Maybe should be
"Are you paranoid?"
"Realistic."

mustanger said...

That bathroom just pulled safe room duty. Disturbed Napper secured her weapon, readied it, and got where Sumdood and his buddy couldn't get behind her. Had the perps forced entry on the bathroom door, they'd have been facing a rifle in a choke point. Sounds like more than enough bad juju to me. Much safer for a surprised, possibly scared, homeowner than trying to clear the house alone and not knowing exactly where the perps are.

Not what you do with a rifle? When the situation turns to CQB, you still run what you brung.

Anonymous said...

" If we order pizza and it takes that long, we get upset."

Olde Joke:

If you shoot an intruder in your home, remember to call the police, the ambulance and the pizza guy.

That way you and ambulance guys have something to eat while waiting for the cops.

Anonymous said...

Given the current trend of people working at home, daytime suburban robbery is a gutsy move. I work from home at least twice a week - and might react more violently than the lady in the story (although her reaction was a very good one).

Kilroy said...

Best alarm is still and will always be a 100lb rott.

Bubblehead Les. said...

Been having that trend up here for years. The Police broke up a Teen Age Crime ring made up of kids who would deliberately get suspended from school just so they could hit the houses in our 'Burb. My next-door neighbor to my Back Yard got hit about 18 months ago. The only reason they got caught was a Lady down the Road took a Half-Day off and noticed that the side door to her garage was open. 911, and a few minutes later, they caught about 5 Kids in her House.

Too bad they were Prosecuted as Juvies, and got their wrist slapped.

Bram said...

Kilroy - I prefer my 160 lb Mastiff.

Les - Had some teenage boys stealing credit card statements from mail boxes and using the numbers to order stuff for themselves a few years ago. What hurt them more than the juvy charges - the Judge made their parents cover the cost of everything they stole. My wife showed up in court to testify. The parents all looked like they were going to murder their kids.

cj said...

Working from a home office in the basement, and not believing in those force fields, those "let's hit this house in the daytime since they're probably at work" types hopefully won't decide to randomly choose my house out of all the others.

Of course, home office is in the basement with some nifty alternative exit routes...and being a home office happens to have a few phone lines conveniently located. Even more convenient are the safes containing what the media would describe as a pants-wetting arsenal (I call it a good start) of bad-day inducement for anyone unfortunate enough to be involved in such an incident.

Matt G said...

In the small semi-suburban, semi-rural town that I patrol in, I'm occasionally asked what's the worst kind of crime we get. "Murder, Rape, Kidnapping, Robbery, Burglary, and aggravated offenses," I answer. The inquirer is always shocked. Surely not out here!! they respond.

Yeah, we haven't actually ever gotten around to building that wall around Smallsville, yet.

And even if you did, things like daytime home burglaries would still scare the heck out of the inhabitants.

freddyboomboom said...

Are you sure it was Sumdood?

'Cause I don't think I've played that toon in a while.

Blackwing1 said...

I think it was Heinlein that coined the tag, "free-lance socialist" in "Time Enough For Love", 1975 (describing the perp who attempts armed robbery on the little breakfast place his adopted twins start). Joe dispatched the bad guy with a meat cleaver, and got a bonus from the street committee for going up against a gun with a blade.


I sure wouldn't want to try to spin the combination on the big gun safe while somebody's kicking in my door. The bedside pistol, in a locking-sliding-drawer safe, takes only a 4-button punch and a twist of the knob, and a full-size .45 (kept with one up the spout) is in hand, as well as two spare magazines. Even better is my carry gun, in its IWB holster, sitting on the bookshelf next to the bed.

DirtCrashr said...

I'm the guard dog, so stay-at-home has some value when tweakers are knocking on doors to sell "magazine subscriptions" or otherwise case the homes.
We had larger mail-boxes installed to reduce the opportunity-thefts of packages left by the PO on doorsteps.

Goober said...

Alien;
I support the homeowners actions. Its what we should all do in a similar situation. Some of us just aren't that keen on going hunting for a gunfight with an unknown number of possibly armed men of uncertain location just to keep them from stealing an insured TV set. I've told my wife the same thing. Lock yourself in the bedroom and let them have the TV. But if they try to come through that door they'll have to line up for you to do it. Like a shooting gallery.

Kristopher said...

freddyboomboom: Jebus, yer gear sucks. I take it you really really aren't playing him?

A few trips through raid finder would fix that. Although with MoP comming out next month, whybotheritis does rear its ugly head ...

mustanger said...

A little more regarding retreat to bed/bath/safe room...

I recall someone pointed out... and this was a long time ago, before I got to listening to "the experts"... when someone breaks into your home, they don't know your home near as well as you do. Study your home and figure out your safest places and places that give you all the advantages. You don't have to go SWAT and hunt them. Let them come to you.

Also, the best shooting/gunfight isn't necessarily the one you win, although surviving always beats losing. The best shooting is the one that didn't happen because you were able to avoid it. That's probably the biggest point in this story... the surprised homeowner was ready and able to defend herself from a very defensible position, but was lucky enough not to have to shoot/fight from that position.

DirtCrashr said...

I live in a glass house with no "safest place" and nearly every out-going shot is a rule #4 violation with a damn lawyer attached like a tick.

Buzz said...

Freelance, hell.
It's so easy to vote for those that will do it on your behalf, why do so many still take the risk? Is it like the teens that steal for thrill?

KM said...

Rape, steal, cut, shoot.
Take your pick on what scumbags will do for a thrill.

DirtCrashr, go with smaller shot than 00 for the 'safer' room gun.
Might keep those ticks away.

Mr Evilwrench said...

#1 is supposed to be ideal, but 00 stacks so nicely in a 12ga shell. I'm one of those neighbors that'll see to the others' houses (except the guy to the north, he's an asshole) but someone busts in here is gonna get shot in the face, and probably several other places. My house is a spiral, easy to clear.

Justthisguy said...

I reckon I am just screwed,here. Not only am I an extreme introvert, but I am pretty sure that I have some autistic tendencies, and have been taught by my fellow human monkeys to be quite misanthropic.

I would like to get along with my neighbors, but it seems that I am not able to manage that. One of them did give me a bottle of oil to lubricate the chain on my bike, so there may be some hope for me.

Windy Wilson said...

"freelance wealth-sharing"

Please! That's insensitive!
It's "undocumented tax collector."