Defensive Gun Use of the Day: Charles Robbins

When Charles Robbins of Daytona Beach woke up to hear someone prying his door open, he picked up his handgun. And as the door opened Robbins dropped him in his tracks with one through the brisket. Tyler Orshoski, career criminal, had chosen the wrong house to burgle. . .

From newsjournalonline.com:

“In my opinion he was well within his rights,” (Police Chief Mike) Chitwood said of the shooter.

Chitwood said the homeowner awoke to the sound of an intruder and grabbed a pistol. As the burglar began to open the door, the man fired once. The bullet went through the door, striking Orshoski in the abdomen. He died on the porch outside the door, never gaining entry into the residence, the chief said. Orshoski has a long local arrest record.

The 82-year-old Robbins evidently lives in a challenging neighborhood. Which makes his decision to arm himself all the more rational.

Residents in the neighborhood were saddened but not surprised by the incident.

“This is the second time within a year I have woken up with crime scene tape around my house,” said Dawn Tharpe. “It is very scary what is happening around here.”

Good for Mr. Robbins. We’re more than happy to present our DGUTD award to him and hope he never has to be a candidate for another.

comments

  1. avatar Skyler says:

    What? You’re not going to insist that, despite all the positive results and the support of the law local constabulary, that the home owner should have first given the burglar a chance to run away? I mean, what if he had missed? It just would have made the burglar angry and then the homeowner would be in big danger.

    1. avatar Mikeb302000 says:

      Yes, indeed, what if he had missed? And what if it had been Mr. Robbins’ nephew from New Jersey paying a surprise visit? Or, how about the teenager next door, loaded on drugs and thinking he was at his own home.

      No, I’m afraid shooting through the door at you-don’t-know-who can never be a legitimate DGU.

      Your hero was lucky is all.

      1. avatar Dogman says:

        Shooting blindly at someone on the other side of a door is certainly not a safe defensive tactic, however, given the history and circumstances it is defensible. Fortunately Mr Robbins WAS lucky.

        Damn. Did I just agree with Mikeb302000?

        1. avatar Steve says:

          I think that given the information we have here, we cannot make intelligent judgements about this guy’s actions.

          Did he take a peek out the window first and Know it was an intruder breaking into his house? Had he seen this guy try to break in before? Who knows, because the article doesnt say.

          I do think that just blasting thru the door is irresponsible. Maybe this guy was just drunk on his way home from a bar or something and got confused and picked the wrong house. Without more info it is difficult to make any sound judgement.

          Now if he had actually broken the door open and came into the house, that might be different.

          Anyway Dogman, its Ok to agree with Mike if he is making sense.

        2. avatar Silver says:

          “I think that given the information we have here, we cannot make intelligent judgements about this guy’s actions.”

          Gun-grabbers love to make knee-jerk judgments. Since when did intelligence ever come into play?

      2. He takes self defense seriously and goes to the range 5 days a week so he know were to aim and were to shoot, he never misses. And his nephews all know better than to come over unannounced. He’s also 82 years old so if the next door teenager strung out on drugs is in his front door he’s not at the wrong house he just wants to rob Mr. Robbins of his pain killers.

        He was not lucky he was prepared and apparently a very light sleeper.

        Any other fictional arguments mike???? I love this guys and how he and all of his gun grabbing ideas like to turn a good and bad shooting scenario against all who choose armed self defense.

        1. avatar Mikeb302000 says:

          It doesn’t matter how old you are. You cannot shoot through the door at some noises and call it a legit shoot.

          Well, I guess you can, if you’re biased and defensive of any and all gun uses.

        2. avatar Robert Farago says:

          Ultimately, it’s a judgement call, based on a large number of factors. The police and the DA and then a jury (if needed) examine the totality of the circumstances and make the call. The fact that he’s walking tells you that people in authority considered his actions “reasonable.” That is all.

      3. avatar Matt Gregg says:

        Yeah I’d feel a lot better about this if it said that he confirmed his target. That being said, the “what if he missed” argument is pure BS.

        1. avatar Frank Weston says:

          He did confirm his target, that is why the Criminal is dead on the porch!!

      4. avatar TSgt B says:

        READ THE STORY, [flame removed]! The bad guy had already breached the door, and by all accounts had every intention of continuing his criminal act(s). It wasn’t his nephew, or any other law-abiding citizen. This slug had an extensive criminal record. I’ll bet good money he wasn’t trying to collect for the Red Cross.

        Have you ever been in a situation where you needed to defend yourself with a firearm? Didn’t think so. I HAVE. I didn’t choose the scenario, and I would not care to repeat it. BUT, I am still here today, proving the usefulness of (a) being prepared, and (b) possessing the tool(s) necessary for successfully defending my home and myself.

        My relatives and friends have the common sense, and courtesy, to announce their presence, and knock. With their knuckles, not their feet. [flame removed]

      5. “Or, how about the teenager next door, loaded on drugs and thinking he was at his own home.”

        So Mike; how much time did you spend today on preventing teenagers from taking drugs?
        Just think; you could save some kid’s life by doing something about drug abuse.
        I suggest you take reading classes too, as you might then have noted that the dead criminal used force to open the door – hardly the actions of some innocent person.
        You are also making the presumption that the dead criminal didn’t open the door far enough for identification, as THAT piece of knowledge isn’t in the report.

    2. avatar HSR47 says:

      Farago would have…

  2. avatar Chas says:

    Good for Mr. Robbins. He saved the taxpayers the boatload of money it would have taken to incarcerate and “rehabilitate” this habitual scumbag, er, I mean, disadvantaged victim of the “system”.

  3. avatar Pro.0s says:

    link is dead.

      1. avatar Pro.0s says:

        Thanks. Interesting… He used a Tokarev. Probably loaded with FMJ. And people belittle the lowly 9mm. Its the indian not the arrow. Use what you like, shoot until they drop.

  4. avatar Steve says:

    I am surprised that Media-Mike Chitwood didn’t have this fellow brought up on charges. When he (Chief Chitwood) was Chief of Police in Portland Maine he sought all kinds of special gun control regulations for the city. Registration, 5-day waiting periods, etc etc.

    http://www.nbcuniversalarchives.com/nbcuni/clip/5112542016_010.do

    http://articles.philly.com/2005-11-16/news/25431294_1_top-officers-police-union-arrests

    http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P2-8094096.html

    1. avatar Alanna says:

      Not the same Chitwood. The one in PA (who was also chief in Portland) is the Daytona Chitwood’s father. I live in Upper Darby, where he’s currently police chief, and am treated to his delightful media diatribes in our local news.

  5. avatar RKflorida says:

    Guy was prying his door to open it. Enough for me.

    1. avatar Matt G. says:

      Right!? Because prying at doors is totally grounds for the death penalty.

      1. avatar anthony says:

        the only reason a druggie like that would pry someones door open is to steal and destroy if i hear someone prying door open theyer gonna meet my shotgun sue me later i dont care ill survive whoever tries to break in.

  6. avatar GS650G says:

    “And what if it had been Mr. Robbins’ nephew from New Jersey paying a surprise visit? ”
    Guess what?, a nephew from New Jersey wouldn’t be opening the door with a pry bar. Maybe MikeB203000’s relatives use a crowbar for a master key. Hey Mike, don’t buy a gun mmmkay?
    Nice piece of trash they took off his lawn. I wonder how many times he plead down, turned CI, or had his case dismissed by intimidating victims. They should name the street after Charles Robbins.

  7. avatar Tim McNabb says:

    Rule #4 is know your target and what’s behind it.

    Glad it worked out, but I do not think I would fire blindly through the door for the reasons cited by MikeB2000 (GASP!) – which is why I teach new shooters the four rules in the first place.

  8. avatar Ralph says:

    Hey, guys, you who want to judge this old timer and spout your platitudes about the Four Rules — none of you were there. Especially not mikey, who would put this old guy in jail if he could.

    1. avatar Mikeb302000 says:

      I wouldn’t put him in jail, but I’d take his guns.

      You’re pretty wishy-washy, Ralph, when it comes to the 4 Rules. In cases where it suits, you support them like everybody else, but all of a sudden they’re platitudes.

      When you worked as a lawyer, were you that transparent with your double talking?

      1. I wouldn’t put him in jail, but I’d take his guns.

        Leaving him to be murdered by a scumbag habitual criminal.
        No doubt you are of a kind that doesn’t believe in locking people up “because we can find the good in them”.
        I don’t believe in locking up violent criminals for decades either – they should be executed as soon as their guilt is proven.

        You really ARE a fine piece of work when you advocate incarcerating the victim of a crime for having the audacity to defend himself.

        1. avatar Mikeb302000 says:

          You want to execute all violent criminals and you say I’m the “PIECE OF WORK.”

        2. Why shouldn’t murderers & rapists be put down?
          If it’s OK to do it to dogs who have no sense of right & wrong then euthenasing humans who make a conscious decision to do ill is OK in my book.
          Oh, I forgot; a criminal’s life is more important to you than that of any of his victims.
          You’re a loony.

        3. avatar mikeb302000 says:

          Mike, I never said the criminal life is more important than the good-guy life. All life is important. You’re the one who seems to be placing too little value on the criminal life.

          Imagine this: let’s take a thousand violent criminals, guys who do break-ins and armed robberies. Some of them are hard-core guys who will always harm others at every opportunity. But, some others, are occasional criminals who will eventually get out of the life, or addicts who will go into rehab within the next year or so and turn their lives around.

          You, tough guy that you are, want to blow them all away at the first chance.

        4. You, tough guy that you are, want to blow them all away at the first chance.
          No; I want violent criminals tried, convicted & executed.
          And no; their lives AREN’T anywhere near as valuable as those of their victims. In fact they’re worthless.

        5. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

          “You want to execute all violent criminals and you say I’m the “PIECE OF WORK.””
          —–
          Wait, WHAT?!

        6. avatar mikeb302000 says:

          Moon, you don’t even get what I meant, huh? It’s like this. You would like to get tougher on violent offenders, right? in order to express how strongly you feel, you say they should be executed. Even conceding some hyperbole, we get that, it’s clear.

          Now, who would do all that executing? The government, right? I mean, who else?

          Yet, you insist the government has to keep its hands off your gun rights.

          Do you see the stupidity and the inconsistency? FLAME DELETED

        7. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

          “Yet, you insist the government has to keep its hands off your gun rights.”
          —–
          Um, yeah? There is no inconsistency; I’m not the violent criminal. Until such time as I am, the government needs to Leave Me The F**k Alone (hereafter, LMTFA).

          Gosh, when I ignore the ad hominem in your posts, my responses get markedly shorter. Interesting…

        8. avatar RobinGoodfellow says:

          He wasn’t executed because he was a violent criminal. Only the court system can mete out that punishment. He died as a result of a man using deadly force to defend his life, which the law in Florida allows him to do in that situation.

  9. avatar Graybeard says:

    I went & read the linked news report. The salient (IMHO) points

    – Mr. Robbins is 82, a recent widower, and was reported as being “unsteady on his feet” as he walked to the police car.
    – Mr. Orshoski had a hammer & screwdriver.
    – A past attempt to gain entry had been made, presumably by Mr. Orshoski.
    – The neighborhood has a history of violence – including a drug-debt gunfight in a neighboring house.

    While I would normally agree with Mike et al about seeing what you are shooting at before shooting, the circumstances in this case indicate that Mr. Robbins could not afford that luxury. A young assailant can move faster than he apparently can. With the hammer & screwdriver, the noise of the attempted forced entry is not something that could be easily mistaken for an out-of-town relative trying to come in for a surprise visit at 6:00 a.m.

    Given the time, the neighborhood and it’s history, the age of Mr. Robbins, and the fact that his home had been targeted in the past, it is quite reasonable for him to take the shot through the door without waiting to see who the intruder is or what his actions might turn out to be if he gets the door open.

    I’m some 22 years younger than Mr. Robbins, and still in good physical shape (trying to keep up with a bunch of teenage Scouts will do that to you). I also live in a low-crime area, so I can afford to wait to see who is coming in at 6:00 a.m. and hold my fire until I can ID my target. I don’t think Mr. Robbins had that luxury, and will not join in the condemnation for his actions.

  10. avatar spymyeyes says:

    you guys seem to forgetting a few thing about this story…..

    QUOTE: “When Charles Robbins of Daytona Beach woke up to hear someone prying his door open, he picked up his handgun. ”

    I don’t know how many of you know what a door sounds like when being pried out of it’s frame with a crowbar, but I must tell you, it make a hell of a racket!

    I don’t care who the hell you are but if your attacking my front door with a crowbar trying to get into my home, you are, #1 tresspassing, #2 breaking & entering, #3 armed and dangerous, #4 living in a high crime area, #5 your 82 years old and frail but not STUPID, #6 within your rights to defend yourself against an intruder armed with at LEAST a crowbar, and last but not least, everyone knows about the castle doctrine where you live, I would blow him away as well.

    The crook was a human piece of trash that needed to die, period.

  11. avatar Seth T says:

    I grew up in a very rough neighborhood. Unless you’ve lived in places where people are brazen and aren’t afraid to kick in your front door in broad daylight, pry their way through your door while your infant sleeps upstairs and your wife is doing laundry (happened to us), then you can’t possibly understand the fear this man and other residents live with on a daily basis.

    As for the comments suggesting he fired blindly through a door…I don’t think so. Anyone that lives in an area with frequent crime/break in’s know what the rules of the street are and they understand what criminal trespass sounds and looks like. Sadly, homeowners become familiar with the warning sounds of broken glass, prying crowbars scratching and squeaking their way into door jambs, etc.

    What’s worse is that they second-guessed for protecting their lives. Guests knock at the door. Bad guys break into the door. Simple as that. Mr. Robbins fired to protect himself from someone that had absolutely no right to tread upon him.

    One down, way too many to go.

  12. avatar Silver says:

    Oh come on people, like mikeb and the gun-grabbers say, that crook has more of a right to break into your house than you have to defend it. It’s your civic, responsible duty to call the police then sit and cry; at least then the police will get there in time to clean up your body before it begins to stink up the neighborhood.

    If we can save just one criminal…

  13. avatar GS650G says:

    Hopefully the criminal did not get a chance to procreate.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      I never knew one who didn’t procreate excessively.

  14. avatar Matt G. says:

    While I don’t begrudge the guy his actions, shooting through the door is almost never a good idea. For one, it makes you look bad to a jury of joes, and two, for all you know it’s some stupid teenager who made a bad descision, it’s not terribly likely but if he comes through your door and ends up face to face with a shotgun, he might just learn a good lesson or two. I’m not one of these “sympathy for the criminal” asshats, but I’m not going to shoot somebody until I feel lives are in danger. Mine or otherwise. Anybody who would just shoot through a door with no clue who’s behind it, other than the fact that they are breaking in, is either bloodthirsty or just not making sound decisions. I think this guy was the latter, he is old, apparatently frail, lives in a not so nice area, and had recently dealt with the loss of his wife. It seems clear he could easily have just made a bad decision, and I don’t blame him.

    But all these idiots saying they would “blow away” anybody on the other side of the door make us look bad. Please folks, grow up, the world is not modern warfare and you WILL get in trouble for just killing people. You may be protected from the law by the castle doctrine, but you aren’t protected from judgment by a higher power, if you believe in that sort of thing, or from your own conscience, if it turns out to be a 14 year old with a screwdriver on the other side of that door.

    1. avatar spymyeyes says:

      @matt g.,

      you sir, are an idiot.

      you do NOT pry a door out of it’s hinges with a screwdriver.

      takes at least a crowbar, and that’s what he is useing to B&E, never mind what else he has on him in case someone is home.

      with or without the castle law if a person is prying your door out of it’s hinges, you must be very strong to do it.

      niether I nor anyone for that matter has to wait for said badguy to finsh breaking in and “identify” your sight picture nice and range-like.

      this is life or death time and leaving yourself open to the tender mercies of said bad guy who just broke into your home is the best way for you and your loved ones to die.

      a few loads of double 00 buck wont go through houses like a high powered rifle round. same goes for most handgun ammo, if your shooting through whats left of your door and into the badguy I very much doubt that even a 45 would have enough force left to punch through the house across the street.

      with it being a high crime area, as soon as people hear gun fire they most always hit the ground and find cover before looking around so I would not worry about hitting anyone else, the bad guy dies, pure and simple. all other considerations come after you and your family is safe.

    2. avatar Ralph says:

      But all these idiots saying they would “blow away” anybody on the other side of the door make us look bad.

      Matt G, it sound to me like you think that there’s some kind of “collective guilt” that reflects personally on you if anyone with a gun says or does something that you think is wrong. That’s kinda preposterous, don’t you think? And if you’re suggesting that everybody else in the world is going to feel the way you do, then isn’t that more than a little pretentious?

      We — if there is a we — have nothing to apologize for, there’s no reason why we have to walk around on eggshells, carefully biting our tongues so “we” won’t offend “them.” Instead of us being so paranoid about what they think, let them be concerned about offending us.

  15. avatar Tom says:

    It would have been nice for Charles to hold fire until the perp made it through the door, but I might be alarmed if some one was prying off my door.

  16. avatar Matt G. says:

    Spymyeyes: shut up troll.

    Ralph: I am a gun owner, when other gun owners do something stupid it of course reflects badly on me. The world is full of bigots and they WILL apply other people’s actions to their opinion of you. I you cannot be a member of a societal group and not be effected by the actions of the rest of the group, that’s simple sociology. The world is made up of mostly people who know jack and shit about guns and gun owners, when they see peoe in the news shooting people through doors and executing people in their living rooms(see the blog post two above this one) and getting away with it scott free, they WILL overreact, and they will apply that stereotype to other gun owners. They will be much more susceptible to lefty dooshbag propaganda about how castle doctrine is a liscense to kill. They won’t just want the law to be changed so people can’t get away with executions like the other story, or bad decisions like this story, they will want the entire law stricken because people love to overreact. They love to be outraged over a just cause.

    As for “walking around on eggshells”, I don’t consider not killing people when its not necessary walking on eggshells. just because someone’s breaking into your house, does not mean your life is in danger. If he opens the door and brandishes a butcher knife, or has a gun, then yeah, but my house has been broken into by stupid teenagers who did not deserve to die, if I had killed them, I would be in the wrong, even if castle doctrine protected me, I consider my conscience to be much more important than any state law.

    Killing someone when they are not threat to your life, or the life of others, is wrong, I don’t particularly give a damn if someone agrees or not. If someone come through my door and becomes a threat, I will stop them, I’m not one of these “you never know what you’ll do till it happens” people, but I won’t go shooting noises in the dark.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      I am a gun owner, when other gun owners do something stupid it of course reflects badly on me.

      We weren’t talking about doing something stupid. We were talking about saying something that you think is stupid. But let’s say, for the sake of argument, that we were talking about actions.

      A driver who runs over somebody on the sidewalk does not reflect on your ability to drive a car. A father who beats his kids does not reflect on your ability to raise your own children. When a bad man rapes a woman, it does not reflect badly on the rest of the males in this world.

      If those horrible actions don’t reflect on you, then how can someone running off at the mouth reflect on you, especially when you disagree?

      Let people say what they want to say. Nobody should have to tow the Matt G line because you think it reflects poorly on you. I don’t think that your statements reflect on me no matter how wrong you are.

  17. avatar Patrick W says:

    Forgive me if I missed something but didn’t the story say “as the door opened”? Why are people above saying he shot THROUGH the door? God Bless Self Defense and May God Bless America! ****Newt 2012****

  18. avatar Sharon Annis says:

    This is a news article. As we well know, the news media leaves out details, whether on purpose or not, to sway the article or due to limited space. It does not state that he “blindly” shot through the door. He might have known that it was noone who belonged at his home, therefore he had every right to do what he did. God bless him. The elderly are targets for crimes and if more of them took control of their environments, there would be less crimes being committed toward them. If this were my father that this happened to I would be thanking God that my father was alive and well. Sorry for the robbers luck. He deserved what he got.

  19. avatar John Taurus says:

    If someone is breaking into your house, you can bet they are not there to bring you cash and goodies. They are there to injure or kill you and to steal something of value. I would shoot them down like the treachrous dogs they are.

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