A homeowner found out the truth of our title the hard way on Friday morning when an intruder entered his home, probably through an unlocked door. The intruder's corollary to this would be that nothing good comes from entering people's homes at 3 AM.
Investigators are saying that the man was shot in the head, then transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead. They also state that while there is evidence that the victim knew the deceased intruder, all the evidence indicates a justified shooting in self-defense.
We at Interritus offer our condolences to the assailant's family on the loss of their son/brother/husband/father (details on the suspect are incomplete) and the circumstances that brought him to making this poor life choice. We also commiserate with the homeowner who was put into the circumstance of having to take a human life by forces beyond his control; specifically: the intruder entering his home uninvited.
My students, the lessons we can take from these men are:
1. Lock your doors and close your windows. The suspect is believed to have entered the house through an overlooked, unlocked door. While it would be the height of victim blaming to suggest that the homeowner practically invited this criminal in through his failure to secure all points of entry into his residence, the homeowner still bears some responsibility to himself and his guests (not the deceased) to have ensured the security of his residence before retiring for the night.
2. An unlocked door is not a "Welcome" mat. Just because the door is unlocked, it does not mean you can just walk into someone's home. Doing so is asking to have violence done upon your person. You are trespassing and in some states are automatically presumed to have violent intent towards the residents. In this case, the suspect paid for his poor decision with his life.
3. The homeowner, when faced with a threat to his household, took immediate, positive action and emerged unscathed; at least physically. Emotionally, he will heal, but it will take time. His healing process will most likely be, in the grandest of California legal traditions, compounded by the inevitable wrongful death lawsuit from his assailant's family and possible criminal charges hanging over his head for his use of deadly force in defending himself in his own home.
4. As in all of my posts, this illustrates the main point of this blog: You Are Your Own First Responder. In a small home, in a bad part of town, police response is often minutes away. The problem is that the intruder is already inside your tiny house and you don't have an army of bodyguards or a safe-room to help you hold out until the police can arrive.
5. In close quarters, your handgun may very well be your best defense against a sudden entry. They're lightweight, simple to operate, and can usually be use with one hand while you hold a flashlight or cell phone in the other.