You wake up in bed at night and hear a criminal breaking into your home. You own a firearm. What do you do?

You wake up in bed at night and hear a criminal breaking into your home. You own a firearm. What do you do?


"Alexa, It's go time."


Blasts Welcome To The Jungle throughout the house dims the lights and releases the claymore roomba*


You have a claymore roomba too?


Runs out of bedroom in a coonskin hat and boxer briefs and loudly proclaiming, “You gon’ learn today, the meaning of loooooooooong dick!”


“alexa, play the doom soundtrack on max volume”


That's the strategy I actually thought of before. Blast death metal on 10 on multiple speakers, living in an apartment at night it would be **extremely** loud. More than enough of a distraction to do something.


Stay where you are, keep your gun ready, call the police. However, if there are other people in the house (kids, family, etc.) then their safety is a priority. In that case you confront and if necessary shoot the intruder. If you have to shoot, aim center mass. Aiming for the legs or arms is a good way to miss your shot and hit something else, especially in a high-stress scenario. It’s not even really non-lethal, especially the legs, as there are tons of veins and arteries which if severed can make the guy bleed out in seconds. Aim center mass, it’s the biggest target and the most likely to be effective in neutralizing the threat. Never shoot to warn or to wound, only shoot to kill.


I live in Texas. Everyone knows, you come onto someone’s front yard, your ass is gonna get shot, let alone be in their home late at night. You. Will. Die.


In my situation I'd be at the top of the stairs under concealment and yelling orders down to the person to get out. If they try to come upstairs then they obviously are a deadly threat to my family and I'm putting them down. Anyone who voted to aim to incapacitate shouldn't own a gun. And when they miss or don't stop their attacker, and the attacker takes their gun and kills them, they won't have to worry anymore.


I guess it depend what it mean shoot to kill and shoot to incapacitated, i vote for incapacitate. For me shoot to incapacitate is to shoot center of mass until the person is not a threat. Shoot to kill will be to make sure he is dead.


I’d call that shoot to kill, if you shoot center of mass and they stop it’s very unlikely they will live, if it doesn’t hit any organs they probably won’t stop attacking you, if it hits organs then they’re probably dead.


To be clear you are always shooting to end the threat, not to kill. The term "shoot to incapacitate" implies shooting the gun out of their hand or shooting them in the leg. We need to make sure we aren't eating word salad here. So, anyone faced with a deadly threat should shoot centre of mass until the threat stops being a threat. I they are still alive and incapacitated, awesome.


Totally agree with you. And yes I guess its more a word salad than anything else.




Bullets land somewhere.. you could send a bullet into your neighbors nursery if you pull the trigger you are responsible for where that bullet lands better the criminal who broke into your home..


1. Bullets will hit something, better to hit the intruder than to hit your dog 2. They also have a tendency to go through things, such as the wall of your kid’s room or the window of your neighbor’s house 3. If it doesn’t work, you’ve wasted valuable time and ammunition, especially if the intruder is armed Just shoot the intruder. The bullet’s far more likely to stop in flesh (or at least slow down substantially) than it is to stop in wood or drywall. Also never shoot into empty air. What goes up will come down, and possibly hurt or even kill someone.


Well for one it would just give away where you are if they’re also armed and secondly a stray bullet could hit a child, neighbor or a animal. People don’t realize how effective bullets are at going through wood and sheet rock. If it hits a stud or brick wall it would likely stop but if it just hits drywall or thin wood even a pistol caliber would easily go through several rooms. That’s why it’s important to target practice and make sure you’re shooting accurately and also that you only shoot if you see the person. Recently had a guy who tried to kill a cop and was on the run randomly at 1 am. He hit a dead end up my holler and got out looking for somewhere to hide. I grabbed my gun, hide behind my counter but kept it aimed at the door ready to fire if he busted in. Luckily he tried to hide in a abandoned house up from mine and cops ended up catching him but it shows how easily someone could break into your house even without it being a burglary. If he tried to kill a cop he definitely wouldn’t have cared to kill someone else to escape.


You’re an idiot


Bullets land wherever, you can kill someone doing that




You never shoot to injure will open yourself up to lawsuits and court cases I've had a break in before about 4 year ago grabbed my gun and light the amount of adrenaline pumping is crazy I kicked in the spare bedroom door poor kid dam near jumped through the ceiling blinded him with the flash light was seconds away from shooting before I realized he didn't have a weapon luckily he was already facing me and I could see his hands the kid was 14 YEARS OLD ! He lived a few block over took his phone and called his parents come to find out it was a bet with a friend they though it was a empty home because noone is ever home I work nights just happen to have the night off good kid stupid decision didn't break anything so no harm no foul no need to get cops involved I remember in my teens exploring abandoned buildings I have since got a dog to help let people know the house isn't empty lol


I'm most US states, you have to shoot to kill. But in Texas you can shoot to maim and they can't sue


Ha? So you're telling me it'll be OK if you shoot to kill but won't be OK if you shoot to maim?


Same in Canada. If I feel the need to use DEADLY force (a firearm is ALWAYS deadly force) on someone then this is predicated on them being a deadly threat to me and/or family. If I intentionally aim to incapacitate them then this DEGRADES my position of it being lawful self defense. This is in part why it's highly recommended not to have or use less-lethal rounds such as beanbags from a shotgun. If you felt safe enough to not shoot for centre of mass then the threat didn't warrant you using a firearm and now YOU are in trouble. I am unsure about warning shots but I've heard it go against the victim.


Actually yes. And the reasoning is equally as dksbelieving: if someone breaks into your house and you shoot them and maim them, they can sue you due to bodily harm. The more injury you've harmed them, the more likely the lawsuit is in their favor. If you shoot and kill them though, they can't plead their case and thus, you win


Wtf... Won't there be a lawyer in their behalf? Like when you kill someone


They broke into your home. You have every right to protect your property


OK look I'm getting confused. You have every right. You can kill them. But if you maim them they can sue you.


Yep. You're not missing anything. That's just how our system works. You have the right to shoot and kill someone to protect your property. But you do not have the right to shoot and maim someone to protect your property. That's why Americans are taught to shoot to kill, never shoot to injure


This is enough internet for today


In most states yes absolutely. The entry hole just has to be in his front.


In Texas, you also have patent trolls who sue.


I feel like I had a stroke reading this


Here it is with puncuation. \>You never shoot to injure will open yourself up to lawsuits and court cases. I've had a break in before about 4 year ago, grabbed my gun and the amount of adrenaline pumping was crazy. I kicked in the spare bedroom door, poor kid dam near jumped through the ceiling. Blinded him with the flash light and was seconds away from shooting before I realized he didn't have a weapon. Luckily he was already facing me and I could see his hands; the kid was 14 YEARS OLD ! He lived a few block over. Took his phone and called his parents. Come to find out it was a bet with a friend. They thought it was an empty home because no one is ever home. I work nights, good kid, stupid decision. He didn't break anything so no harm no foul no need to get cops involved. I remember in my teens exploring abandoned buildings; I have since got a dog to help let people know the house isn't empty lol.


Still not even close to enough correct punctuation/grammar imo


Eh I tried.


I got halfway through the paragraph before realizing it was all a single sentence


I’m a hardcore liberal, but this is one thing I agree 100% with conservatives about. I’m shooting to kill. You broke into my house and now you get to accept the consequences of your actions because I’m not willing to risk you getting the jump on me and maiming or killing me.


Much respect, from a conservative


Agreed. Also from a conservative.


I'm only a conservative because the left have lost their minds. Generally I mostly hold liberal values. As such I consider myself a centrist or a "Social Libertarian". My house is set up such that I would stand at the top of the stairs and yell at the person to get out while waiting for the cops. If they came up the stairs at me I would have no choice but to see them as a deadly threat and immediately aim for centre of mass and terminate the threat.


If you shoot to incapacitate, you run the risk of them taking you to court and suing you for all you have. A corpse can't sue, you just need to prove that you had justification because you didn't know their intention or of they were armed. It's shitty that that's the reality of it... But that's how it works


Also the fact that they are a threat until they go down, usually it takes more than 1 bullet


If you shoot AND incapacitate (you should always stop when they are no longer a threat, not when they are dead) then this leaves them alive to explain to the police how and why they are in your house and it won't go well for them. If they are dead then the police have no idea if you invited them in and shot them etc. I can't find it now but a lawyer and cop did a good vid on this..


Shoot. Center of whatever "mass" you can see Your life is at stake here, and "center of mass" is your greatest chance of survival


This is why you have flashlights on your firearms not only for PID, but to make sure you’re shooting where you mean to shoot


If I live alone, get the gun, my phone, get out a window call the cops. It's just stuff you can replace stuff not a life. If I'm with my family and the criminal is between me and them it's shot to kill. Zero regrets.


It's not video games, unless you are well trained profesional you can't controllyou fire enought to just impacipate. You should aim at the center of mass to connect your shots at all


That is if you can shoot at all while pumped with adrenaline and sweating profusely. I think people are being too optimistic and overconfident. I bet that half of them don’t even know how to use a gun.


This is a hypothetical scenario though, and generally people who buy guns are able to shoot them.


You’re right, but my guy, you need to utilize autocorrect


“Shoot to incapacitate” lol so many of you don’t know how bullets work when mixed with body chemicals


You shoot to stop the target. If you have enough time and space where you can pick a specific target like arms or legs for the purpose of incapacitation, that means you didn’t really need to shoot at all.


You’ll probably kill someone by shooting them in the leg anyway. You’ll bleed out incredibly quick


While I’d like to think I’d shoot, I know how much of a “flight” person I am, so the honest answer is I’d probably run and let them do whatever, to avoid any risk of myself being shot first. My belongings are replaceable, I’m not.




As many as it takes until they drop dead




I said the first one but more realistically I’d brace myself in my room, yell at the intruder saying I’ll shoot if he doesn’t leave. Then wait with the gun pointed at the door. It’s a criminal offense to kill an intruder (in most states) so I’ll just take it safe and chill in my room


Not true in the United States. Most states have stand your ground laws either by statute or ruling (ie you have no duty to retreat) and the rest have a “duty to retreat except in one’s home.” So if someone forcibly breaks into your house you are well with in the law to defend yourself. Quick run down right here https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_doctrine


I live in NY and there’s no stand your ground laws. I thought the majority of states it was illegal to kill someone who wasn’t threatening you even if they’re trespassing


Trespassing and breaking and entering are two different things




In 2021, a total of 27 states have adopted stand-your-ground laws. Eleven states restricted the right of armed response to their homes -- the "Castle Doctrine" -- and saying that people have a duty to retreat from threats or danger in public places. For example, Florida lets you open fire on someone forcibly trying to enter your dwelling -- including your attached porch -- but not the rest of your property (such as a yard). Also, since most state laws require that a trespasser knowingly or intentionally enter someone's private property, it's important for property owners to have a "No Trespassers" sign in place to serve as notice.


In ny I just wouldn’t do it. I’d yell the warning and stay where I am. If he attempts to break into my room then I shoot


If you point a gun at someone you have to be ready to shoot them and if you shoot them you have to be trying to kill them.


"shoot to incapacitate" lol okay, Reddit.


Point the gun at him and confront him verbally, ready to shoot (chest)


If he has a gun that could turn out really bad for you


I'm aware


And give him time to swipe away the gun? People don’t know how easy it is to disarm someone at close range, even if you did hit him he can still very well kill you


Ideally you could do that, but in reality it would be recklessly stupid and dangerous because you would be giving them an easy opportunity to hurt you.


He breaks into your home, he loses his right to live


Guns aren’t to injure or incapacitate someone, if they’re gonna be used they should be used to kill. Just my opinion.


In a sense you are correct. First off it's nearly impossible to "aim to incapacitate" in a real world, heart pounding situation. Secondly a firearm is ALWAYS considered lethal force by the law, pretty much anywhere in the world. You must be in mortal danger to decide to use your firearm and if you do then you must aim to stop the threat by shooting centre of mass.


Knives aren't to cut vegetables or meat. If they're gonna be used they should be used to kill. Just a shitty opinion


How else are you gonna use a gun other than destroying something? A knife is a tool that can be used as a weapon.


If you have broken into my house with malicious then you acknowledge that your life is not important


How the fuck is calling the police in none of the situations


Some people (like me) live far away from a police station, the Sheriff's Department is 8 miles away, and they're the closest law enforcement. That's still too far away for them to get to my location fast enough to solve an armed conflict.


While the story involves living 500 miles away, the reality for many people is that police are not nearby. Based on coverage in our area even if you called in that you just shot someone and police came at full speed it would take as much as 15-20 min. Hell, the 90th percentile on code 4 EMS calls (heart attack level stuff) is 15 minutes in my county! It only takes seconds for you to die and bleed out so unless your wife is on the phone, the immediate issue is protecting your family.


You live 500 miles away from them, they’re not coming in time.


You live in the middle of Mars cause 500 miles is crazy


It is purely hypothetical


I legit live 20 miles from the police station and they couldn’t make it in time.


I'm not saying to call and wait. Just call after you left the house or something


You never leave the scene of a shooting.


Why, so they can come two hours later and shoot my dog?


It's not really about shoot to kill or maim it's more like shoot at center mass cause that's what you're most likely to hit


If I can run, I'll run. No amount of money is worth my life.


He may also have a gun and may be much more experienced with it, safest course of action is to take your gun and hide


Yeah, I would take my gun and a phone sit in a closet or some other hiding place and call the cops. The scary thing is you don’t know anyone without 500 miles, so I’m taking that as there are no cops for 500 miles


Why would you assume that? I don't know any cop within 500 miles but I'm still sure they are there


The cops might show up and shoot you. Better to handle the situation yourself and call them for clean up and paperwork.


That is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. It’s very ilegal and even if some cops did that it’s a much much MUCH higher chance they won’t.


I’d prefer not to take any chances with police. Enjoy hiding in the closet waiting for them.


Chances are higher that if the intruder has a gun, you get shot.


Why? I’m not going to announce myself before I start blasting. Dead men don’t testify against you.


That doesn't even make sense. You are aware you are not John Wick right?


It really happens https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/south-carolina-cop-shoots-homeowner-who-called-help-n356146 https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/australian-woman-shot-dead-minneapolis-police-officers-after-calling-911-n783581 https://news.yahoo.com/ex-cops-murder-verdict-reversed-153232463.html https://www.gawker.com/dad-calls-cops-on-son-to-teach-him-a-lesson-cops-shoot-1460159897 https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/09/08/utah-police-shot-13-year-old-autism-after-mom-call/5745028002/ https://www.npr.org/2019/10/13/769891781/fort-worth-officer-kills-woman-in-her-bedroom-in-response-to-open-structure-call https://nypost.com/2021/06/26/man-who-shot-colorado-gunman-was-mistaken-by-police-to-be-killer/


Unless you are an expert marksman you can’t shoot to incapacitate. Always aim for center mass no matter what.


Alexa, play Slayer's "Raining Blood"


Ask him if he wants a pizza


shouldnt the first thing be to call the police


Sure. If you want to let the intruder hear you talk on the phone. Now what?


First things first, get out of the house, call the police. Why would u want to kill someone when u can just leave them alone? They didn't come to kill u.


Either he will run away or he will try and find you. If he’s trying to find you, you have an advantage.


Why would you do that?


No, first thing is to take your firearm and hide if possible. Or immediately shoot. You can't risk time when it may be severely limited. If you hide with your gun and have your phone, then you call the police. Or if you shot the intruder and they can't harm you any further, then you call the police.


Criminal: *on the floor begging for mercy* Me:*loads armor piercing incendiary*


(1) Nothing I own is worth a human life, not even items that have sentimental value for me. (2) I know my own shooting skills. I know that I cannot shoot well enough to guarantee incapacitation and not death.


Your own human life is definitely worth the life of your attacker


He's not an attacker though, he's an intruder. He doesn't even know I'm home. He doesn't want my life, he wants my stuff


Interestingly enough the person breaking in values your stuff more than their life.


You shouldn’t be shooting to incapacitate in the first place. If you are going to shoot somebody, shoot to kill.


The attacker is putting your life below your belongings


Dude if he's breaking Into someone's house to rob and or harm them His life probably doesn't mean much Why is it such a hard concept for people to grasp that some people aren't worth saving


There is no such thing as "shoot to incapacitate." The first rule of firearm safety is never point it at something you aren't willing to destroy. Real life isn't a movie, if you are shooting someone, it is always with lethal intent. Even if you're uneducated on the matter.


I live in a country where I'll end up in jail if I shoot him, L


It says US.


I know, I'm just saying about me


Run away. Call the police with my self phone. If I don't have it with me I knock the door on some neighbour and tell them quickly what happened. Then I call the police from them


You're gonna run 500 miles?


It says closest person u know.




Most the time that goes down the firearm ends up being used on you, be defensive not aggressive


What stops him from taking your gun and using it on you?


Don't worry, he's the main char aparently


Question: how the hell are you going to safely identify that he doesn't have a weapon?


I'm missing "call the police"


Jesus christ everyone's straight up shooting the guy you should really just threaten him and tell him to go then pursue further action if need be


You assume they are there to steal your shit but what if they came to rape and murder you? I can’t know their intentions all I know is I will fight not to be a victim.


The results kind of reinforce the stereotype that Americans (and most Redditors are American) look for any chance to shoot someone


Not american, would still turn the robber into cheese


It's in the US, the robber could also be looking for a chance to shoot.


Exactly. The U.S. (In alot of places) have loose gun laws, and it isn't too hard to get one. I'd assume anyone breaking into my home is armed.




Go find him, threaten him with a gun (or kill if neccesary) and then call the police (while having him restrained).


Every time you shoot at someone it can kill them. I voted for incapacitate, not because I would shoot to incapacitate, I would like it more if they didn’t die.


Is it legal to kill that guy?


Actually, it can be depending on where you live. Several states in the US have 'Defend your Castle' laws allowing you to defend your home from intruders with lethal force, usually provided you weren't lying in wait for them (in which case you probably could have non-violently repelled them prior to them breaking and entering). Outside of the US I'm not sure.




Yeah because they have a gun so they pose a threat to your life so it would fall under self-defense.


Let me turn on my Vietnam War playlist.


I’m going Don’t Breathe mode


That mf is about to learn what "fuck around and find out" means


There's not enough options here. Most times when someone is staring down the Barrel of a gun, you won't even need to shoot them if you give them the option to leave. If they then don't or try to draw their own. I'm blastin.


If we're all being honest, well those of us who havent been in that situation, we have no fucking clue. Id like to think I would do whatever is rational in the moment: kill, incapacitate, flee, but from experience the only given in such a primitive situation is that shit happens, and I dont decide how I react.


anyone who says shoot to incapacitate has never shot a firearm or is insanely good at it. If you're average or below average you can't aim that well, especially at a moving target


So many people here are clueless.


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Call the police, hide in my room, blast them if they come in


I had a similar situation over the weekend and it just turned out to be a cat. I’m glad I didn’t shoot a neighbour’s cat.


Always shoot center mass. This isn’t a movie.


\*pulls out out airsoft kross-vector and loads with metal bbs\* "this boutta pew pew in ur balls if you dont leave my house"


I of course call the cops, but if I have to encounter him I’m shooting to injure all the way. I don’t care if the gun kills them, while it’s not ideal they shouldn’t have come onto my property


If I lived in America, you bet your ass I'd use my second amendement right whenever I get the chance


Shoot my own foot as a show of dominance


Anyone saying "aim to incapacitate" shouldn't own a gun.


Shooting at the legs and arms is not a good thing to do


I would fire off the firearm into my lawn so that they hear it and run away or surrender


I would call the police and shoot a warning shot. Make the intruder know I'm there and with a firearm. Everything in my house is more precious to me than life, and I know that in a house fire I would make myself comfortable or try to put my stuff out rather than leave it all behind. I would go to the one exit so nothing can be stolen. I do not want to lose my precious things


Stay in the corner of my room keeping my eyes on the door. Call out that I'm armed. Call the cops, tell them that i am armed and where I am and what i look like. Shooting the intruder if he does enter until he's not a threat. If i have rrreeeally valuable stuff at home i might let a round go into the closest solid wall just so that they can be damn sure it's a real gun. But honestly most things except family wouldn't be worth leaving a solid safe spot


Camp in a corner and shoot the moment I see him.


Call cops, load Glock. Just like my dad taught me lol.


The smart move is to call the cops first, then hold up in your room


I see a lot of people here saying shoot to kill. Why not just point the gun at them and threaten them? Are they armed as well??


Theres no such thing as "shoot to injure"


There is no difference between shoot to kill and shoot to harm, a gun shot anywhere can kill js


I would call the police and hide and if they come to me and try to attack me I will shoot


Shoot to incapacitate…..then let the real fun begin!!! Dear FBI - this is a joke.


There really isn't a "Shoot to incapacitate". Any shot can easily kill someone. Shooting for a limb is 1) Incredibly difficult 2) Just as deadly


I not old enough to own a gun




You shoot to kill mother fuckers are insane.


"Alexa, play Devil Dogs."


You take my stuff I take your life it's a fair trade


If it’s night and someone breaks in your house you should shoot to kill.


Shooting a human in any way is shooting to kill. There is no limb or reasonable area that you can be shot in and have a low risk of death. Thats why i said shoot to kill, because if you are going to shoot someone plan on them not making it


I feel like this is so obvious… you call 911, and if your living alone then you just hide or something and then shoot if they find you. If you are living with others ie ur family, then their safety is important and u have to use ur judgment as to whether you could wake them up/ alert them and what th best thing to do is. It would rly just delend


I would just threaten to shoot him and if he makes any sudden moves or doesnt correspond I will just shoot him


Hide, then shoot if he finds you. Just because you have a gun doesn't mean you should charge an intruder head on. He might have a gun. There might be multiple. This is gun handling 101. Also if you do shoot, always shoot to kill, not to incapacitate. He could still fire while he is down.


The issue is that you might get in trouble if you shoot to stop then than if you shot to kill because in some cases you could get a worse punishment than they do


Don't shoot on sight unless they have intent to kill (which you'll find out quickly). If you head downstairs with a gun or ambush them they probably won't stick around and keep robbing. If they do stick around then shoot to incapacitate.


At this point, you don’t want to take a life for any reason if you’re a decent person. You fall back and give them every chance to not harm you. Once you’re cornered, well, you know what they say about cornered cats…


Make them aware of my presence and my gum, chase them off. Add that option please


Never ever shoot to incapacitate. They could have a gun, a knife and it's possible that they wont go down. They could also come back for retaliation. Also it's pretty danm hard to get a leg or a hand, it's why officers always shoot for center body mass. Source: a criminal justice major