Around 3:15am on Saturday in Parkland, Washington, a woman in her 60s, whose husband was away on business, woke up to the sound of her dogs barking. Hearing a weird scratching sound, she got up and saw that there was a strange man in her home, heading right toward her as she stood in her bedroom doorway.
Pistol in hand, she told him to stop. He kept advancing.
Perhaps out of kindness, the woman fired a warning shot that blasted past him. Unfazed, the intruder kept moving toward her, at which point she shot him in the arm. He kept yelling “I’m so high!” until he collapsed on her floor.
Holding the would-be burglar at gunpoint, the woman called the police, who found the yoot screaming in agony, bleeding from his arm an exit wound on his shoulder blade. They got there quickly enough, though, to apply two tourniquets and keep him alive until medics arrived to care for him.
The suspect is presumed to have entered the home though a window which had been left open.
A few lessons from this defensive gun use story: First, that 16-year-old was probably smoking something a whole lot scarier than weed. Considering how impaired his perceptions of sound, danger, and pain were, it’s probable that non-lethal force wouldn’t have made him back down. Second, dogs save lives.
Finally – it can’t be said often enough – home invaders are lazy opportunists. They look for the open window, the half-open garage, the unlocked door. Don’t make yourself an easy target.