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Old 07-21-2017, 05:41 PM
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My 'old man' job has me visiting homes and knocking on doors. Without a uniform or vehicle markings, I've always been amazed how people will nonchalantly open the door to a stranger. Over the years family and friends have learned to knock on my back door...a knock at another door means stranger, answer with caution.
Our small community of Cullman Al. had a rare home invasion this week. A prominent businessman was gunned down by a certified mental person(Google) leaving his 71 year old wife in a physical life or death struggle. She won the struggle, killing the assailant with her bare hands( broken flower pot shard). Thankfully, she's recovering in intensive care. Am I the only one that answers the stranger' knock armed?

If you googled our little Cullman hamlet...check out our soon to open nations largest above ground indoor shooting range. While cruising round town you might checkout CullmanUnderground....our entertaining local gossip forum. It's mostly political arguing if you're into that. You can post anonymously without registering or logging in...and when you 1up the 7 or 8 local wizards, they'll talk nasty to you. Pose as a Democrat for immediate attention... HeHeHe....
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Old 07-21-2017, 05:49 PM
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I live in a retirement community, and it continues to amaze me how many folks won't invest in a security/storm door for their entrances. Granted our door was almost 2k so they aren't cheap - but it looks innocent enough. I imagine a determined home invader would prolly be inside in less than a minute anyway - but this puts some safety glass between us and the riffraff walking the streets ...

Edited to add: I just scanned the original post and didn't notice the question about answering the door armed. That is, I guess, pretty much neighborhood-dependent. I certainly don't answer the door armed here - not to say it couldn't happen but there have been no home invasions in the 10 years this community has been open. I had two knocks at the door today - one from the neighbor next door and one from the (also) elderly lady living across the street. Again, if I lived out in a regular neighborhood I'd probably have to be more careful. And, a knock at the door after 10PM would cause me to be a lot more cautious...

Edited again: Forgot to say - good post OP! It's been interesting and good info to see how others handle the knock at the door situation. It's also refreshing to see, so far anyway, that no one has criticized other folks opinions and MO...

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Old 07-21-2017, 05:53 PM
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If'n I don't know you're coming, I'm behind the door with pistol in right hand. Anytime. Lemme know who you are and I might open the door. Unless I owe you money, then I'm not here. Joe
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:04 PM
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I'm pretty much always armed, so that should answer your question.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:10 PM
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I was an LEO for 30 years and learned to be careful all the time but especially when a stranger knocked on the door. This habit carried over into retirement, even though we live in a retirement community. In answer to the Q, when I'm not expecting anyone I do put a J frame in my pocket when there is a knock at the door.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:12 PM
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I've got 2 German Shepherds that always answer the door with me. We don't get many people at the door though
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:19 PM
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Maybe home invasion was the wrong term.
The mental bad guy showed up with premeditated intent.
Terrible, terrible tragedy that has shocked the community.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:22 PM
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I like most people I know have never answered the door with a gun, most of my guest just let themselves in.

Perhaps I am to comfortable with my surroundings.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:42 PM
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Have a J frame inside a recessed shadow box frame next to the front door. Always grab it when I receive an unexpected knock at the door.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:47 PM
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I can see who is at the door as one of the 4 security cameras shows that.
I am armed all the time...
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pharmer View Post
If'n I don't know you're coming, I'm behind the door with pistol in right hand.
Never stand behind the door when someone knocks or rings the doorbell. Never, never, never.

Doesn't matter if you have a pistol in your hand or not.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:48 PM
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Come to think of it, I've never shot a door knocker myself!

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Old 07-21-2017, 06:50 PM
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I have a camera at my front door so it's rare I'll answer a knock if I don't know who it is but if I do, I have a gun.
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Old 07-21-2017, 07:09 PM
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Nobody better knock on my door after dark, I'll tell you that right now!

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Old 07-21-2017, 07:11 PM
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I have a peep hole, an LCP in my pocket and enough cats to give any unwelcomed guest a severe case of static cling.
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Old 07-21-2017, 07:17 PM
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I have a window next to the door that I open and ask, "what's up". I never answer the front door. There is a sign directing them to the side door. I'm always armed that's just normal.
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Old 07-21-2017, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Watchdog View Post
Never stand behind the door when someone knocks or rings the doorbell.
OK next time I'll be out front. Joe
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Old 07-21-2017, 07:48 PM
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My wife had an incident recently with a gentlemen who insisted that he could save us money on having our driveway resealed wouldn't take no for an answer asked if the man of the house was home she said no but my son is she called Katco he's a Belgian Mialinois retired K9 never seen the guy again.
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Old 07-21-2017, 08:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rustyt1953 View Post
I have a peep hole, an LCP in my pocket...
That's all well and good, but to look through the peephole, you gotta stand right behind the door and put your head right up against it.

If your house is like most, you have windows flanking the door...or at least one on one side of it. Don't you?

I have blinds on my windows. What I do is open the blinds on the window next to the door (they're usually left that way)...just enough to see out but not let anyone see in. Then I look at the door from an angle...and far enough away from the door to avoid detection or trouble.

I don't have any cats, though. I would consider getting some if they could all be like this one.

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Old 07-21-2017, 08:14 PM
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I open the door all the time.....when I'm home. I have a 642 in my pocket but my area has no crime outside of DUI on weekends or the occasional kid stealing an iPhone from a car with open windows. To give you an idea....we had a murder last year and it was actually right off my street. It was a love triangle gone wrong. First murder in 30 years. Break ins are unheard of, car theft is unheard of. Drugs..... outside of kids doing pot....is unheard of, unless you have some billionaire lawyer type buying coke in quantity directly from Columbia, is unheard of. Annual income here is about $200k/year per family. Crime in this area is one of the lowest in the country.

Dispute living in PA, a large portion of the victims in the twin towers in NYC on 9/11/01 were from my area. Middle to Upper Bucks County PA

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Old 07-21-2017, 08:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BE Mike View Post
I'm pretty much always armed, so that should answer your question.
Only place I am not is shower or Federal Bulding
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Old 07-21-2017, 08:29 PM
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A one way film over the side window facing the door didn't cost much & acts like a full sized peep hole. There are large 1 1/2" fisheye type peepholes that allow you to see out from a safe distance.
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Old 07-21-2017, 08:33 PM
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If I didn't peep into it it would just be a hole.

I feel I wouldn't be getting my money's worth out of it.
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Old 07-21-2017, 08:33 PM
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I stopped at a Ruby Tuesday's in Cullman for lunch once several years ago on the way back from Pensacola Beach. The only Ruby Tuesday's I've ever been in that didn't sell beer. My vision of the community has been colored thereafter . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by misswired View Post
My 'old man' job has me visiting homes and knocking on doors. Without a uniform or vehicle markings, I've always been amazed how people will nonchalantly open the door to a stranger. Over the years family and friends have learned to knock on my back door...a knock at another door means stranger, answer with caution.
Our small community of Cullman Al. had a rare home invasion this week. A prominent businessman was gunned down by a certified mental person(Google) leaving his 71 year old wife in a physical life or death struggle. She won the struggle, killing the assailant with her bare hands( broken flower pot shard). Thankfully, she's recovering in intensive care. Am I the only one that answers the stranger' knock armed?

If you googled our little Cullman hamlet...check out our soon to open nations largest above ground indoor shooting range. While cruising round town you might checkout CullmanUnderground....our entertaining local gossip forum. It's mostly political arguing if you're into that. You can post anonymously without registering or logging in...and when you 1up the 7 or 8 local wizards, they'll talk nasty to you. Pose as a Democrat for immediate attention... HeHeHe....
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Old 07-21-2017, 08:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GRUMPY247 View Post
My wife had an incident recently with a gentlemen who insisted that he could save us money on having our driveway resealed wouldn't take no for an answer asked if the man of the house was home she said no but my son is she called Katco he's a Belgian Mialinois retired K9 never seen the guy again.
"Gentlemen"? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot Over?
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Old 07-21-2017, 08:47 PM
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I always have my Glock 19 on my hip in an IWB so I'm armed whenever I answer the door. I live in a pretty nice neighborhood so when an unexpected knock isn't my neighbor, I'm always a little cautious.
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Old 07-21-2017, 08:58 PM
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Rodger that muggins... We been wet a few years now
I've lived here many years in a dry' county...
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:01 PM
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We also live in a very low crime area and honestly do not carry in the house or yard. We do however have a fenced in yard (5 acres) with four dogs that are for the most part friendly but don't let anyone in if they don't know them. And even if they know them they don't always let them in. We have shotguns behind each door (3) and also have plenty of handguns on bedside tables and others strategically placed throughout the house.

If we are not home, good luck getting past our dogs, if we are home and mean mischief, good luck getting past us.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:09 PM
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Yes, if I have an unexpected visitor I answer the door with a gun in my hip pocket, unseen by the person.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:19 PM
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I let my wife answer the door.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pharmer View Post
If'n I don't know you're coming, I'm behind the door with pistol in right hand. Anytime. Lemme know who you are and I might open the door. Unless I owe you money, then I'm not here. Joe
Several years ago, someone knocked on my door at 9:30 at night. I live in a big city. Two "yutes" were standing there - maybe 17 years old when I cracked the door, they started eyeing each other, you could tell deciding when to come in at me. I opened the door another 4 inches and they saw the revolver in my hand, down by my side. They took off like scalded cats.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:42 PM
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We live in a good neighborhood too, but any time someone knocks on my door unexpectedly I open it with my left hand - 'cause my right hand is in my front pants pocket - wrapped around the grip of whatever gun I have in that pocket at the moment.

The other day it was my 18 year old. He'd left his keys at home. When I opened the door he looked me up and down and you could see the realization of why my hand was in my pocket cross his face. He looked me in the eye and said "Really?!?"

I said, "Yeah REALLY - you damn straight!" Just the way it is these days.

I think I need to install one of those peep-holes in my front door....

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Old 07-21-2017, 09:53 PM
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I get way too many knocks at the door. I hate them, day or night. Some pretty darn late at night. I stopped answering them with a 1911, I just use a J frame these days. We've discovered my wife is incapable of dialing 911. I have no idea why, maybe she's flustered, afraid, or just doesn't want to, I don't know. It shifts a lot more responsibility to me.

I don't now why people feel its OK to knock late at night (after dark). I stand in line with the opening. I'm pretty sure if someone planted a good kick at the door, they might knock me off balance, or they might get shot. I'll play that game.

On to the Rusty1953 problem. It doesn't matter if you've got a dog or even 2, or a multitude of cats. You're going down as in hitting the floor. With the dogs, they'l knock you over trying to eat the intruder. The cats will knock you down trying to save themselves. Same end result. Its all up to you. If you think you're going to get help, you're in trouble.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by BC38 View Post
We live in a good neighborhood too, but any time someone knocks on my door unexpectedly I open it with my left hand - 'cause my right hand is in my front pants pocket - wrapped around the grip of whatever gun I have in that pocket at the moment.

The other day it was my 18 year old. He'd left his keys at home. When I opened the door he looked me up and down and you could see the realization of why my hand was in my pocket cross his face. He looked me in the eye and said "Really?!?"

I said, "Yeah REALLY - you damn straight!" Just the way it is these days.

I think I need to install one of those peep-holes in my front door....
Funny. I got precisely the same one word response from my 16yo when we had the same encounter.
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Old 07-21-2017, 10:15 PM
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Cullman is an interesting place.
Home of Big Jim Folsom in his later years.
We used to buy seed sweet potatoes near Cullman.
I wish I could remember the farmer's name we bought
them from.

It was a 550 mile-plus round trip, but we would make it in one day.
Sometimes we would go in two pickups, hauling abought 3000
pounds of taters in each 3/4 ton truck. This was early 70s.
Met some good folks up there.
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Old 07-21-2017, 10:26 PM
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I always call before visiting after dark and so do my friends so if I get a knock on the door you can bet a pistol goes with me. No reason to think I'll need it, but it doesn't hurt to have it, too. During daylight hours I'm likely to be less vigilant. Probably shouldn't be.
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Old 07-21-2017, 10:55 PM
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Default Complications...

My son is 17 and is coming and going along with his friends day and night. He often works late and gets with his friends afterward. Some of them I know on sight, others no. I tell him to call me when he expects somebody but that doesn't always happen. He's either in the back or in his upstairs room. Sometimes I'm able to raise him, but that doesn't happen all the time either. I try to be cautious. My dogs raise holy hell anytime somebody comes to the door so that adds to the confusion. Maybe three good sized dogs barking would be a deterrent to anybody coming in unannounced.

I'm sitting on my Shield right now, I probably should be carrying it.
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Old 07-21-2017, 11:06 PM
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Unexpected knocks at the door are why Mr USP lives under the desk in the front room.
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Old 07-21-2017, 11:19 PM
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On to the Rusty1953 problem. It doesn't matter if you've got a dog or even 2, or a multitude of cats. You're going down as in hitting the floor. With the dogs, they'l knock you over trying to eat the intruder. The cats will knock you down trying to save themselves. Same end result. Its all up to you. If you think you're going to get help, you're in trouble.
Well, I'm gonna go way out on a limb here with a wild guess (aka a WAG) and say that ol' Rusty was probably pulling our leg with the thing about the cats.

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Old 07-21-2017, 11:20 PM
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Eko my 85 pound German Shepherd will beat me to the door and greet anyone there before I could get there .. If its one of the kids or grandkids or my brother her tone changes to a Pet Me .. Pet me whine .. if it were to be a stranger her tone would change to a deeper bark and growl till I tell her to stand down .. but I carry 24/7 except while sleeping .. and then its within an arms reach ..
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Old 07-21-2017, 11:37 PM
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No one should feel comfortable coming to my house without a prior invite. We have almost no company ever, and when we had Bozo, could not have company. We don't socialize much; never did, and even less now. Just got better things to do.

We've had both houses fenced off for several years now, and one can only get to the doors by climbing a 6' fence, thus committing a crime (trespass). Before those fences went up, I only responded to knocks/doorbell by yelling through the door. I can't imagine opening the door for anyone until and unless I know who it is. I won't ignore it, as it might encourage a malefactor to think no one is home and that they can break in, but I am not welcoming.

A couple of folks wrote responses that make me think that they have their doors unlocked. Shameful. Doors should only be unlocked when passing through them. Heck, mine is locked behind me when I am taking out the trash. For those of you who say "we don't have a problem" - that will be true, until it isn't. I'm just over 100 miles from Seattle, and there have been Seattle based criminals arrested here for burglaries and the like.
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Old 07-21-2017, 11:58 PM
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Originally Posted by rburg View Post

On to the Rusty1953 problem.
You took the cat thing seriously?


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Old 07-22-2017, 12:02 AM
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This ex cop answered the door with a gun. Maybe sometimes you should just say "who's there?"


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Old 07-22-2017, 12:30 AM
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But Uncle Joe told us all we need is a double barreled shotgun, and if we get frightened, just to shoot through the door with it! That's why I have either one of my 10 bore shotguns ready to go with buckshot, in case I get really scared!

I live in the country, in a tree covered yard. The fact people can't see in is an advantage, it keeps wandering riff raff wondering exactly what is behind those trees down that path, and criminals are lazy, they tend to keep driving till they find something they can see and know. Most of all, this is all private property around here, if you drive in the yard you can be sent out any time, you don't have any right to be here. This keeps people from simply wandering around and getting any ideas.

We are always armed up here, carry is just routine to the point you don't think about it, and with critters in the yard I always keep a revolver open carry about me. Thus, I carry a long gun quite a bit for the same reason, and have greeted people in the yard with them, not threateningly. But a full size shotgun, M1a or HK 91 doesn't have to carried with any malice to set a message to anyone with strange ideas. Most of all, I'm oldschool, I respect a man in his house, am meek and non confrontational in public, but on my own property I'm the master, and any guests damn well know it. Luckily, the crime around here is almost completely non violent, the aggressive types tend to stick to the concrete jungle, and the ones around here are loser burglars who aren't up for much more trouble.

In the main house, I always look out the windows to see the vehicles, small enough community you know what everyone drives, or if its officials on business. If its someone I don't know, I can open the glass slider and step out on the deck and greet them from above where an unarmed person can't rush me. Otherwise I will ask who it is from the top of the stairs, away from the door, and out the path of any rusher ins. In my cabin, the windows and window on the door mean I can see the whole yard, vehicles, and anyone knocking. I'm well prepared, and anyone at the door knows and sees that. If they act a bit too aggressive, maybe I'll follow Uncle Joe's advice.

Ayoob is right on the stay away from the door thing, but you can't just hide away from every knock on the door and live a normal civilized life. The open carrier shows his intentions, this works very well as a means of disuading bad guys. If you think its bad, don't answer it, and if they kick in you know exactly what you got. But, you can greet people kind, but firm. I'm a gracious host, but remember you are just a guest. You can be asked to leave, have the police escort you, or taken out in a bag if you attack me to stay. Polite, but firm.
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Old 07-22-2017, 12:44 AM
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I got tired of typing this out so I just cut and paste it now



Iíve seen this discussed on other forums and it seems to cause a lot of debate when it comes up.

I found this video by Massad Ayoob on youtube in which he explains how he deals with a stranger at his door and thereís not much I can add to it except maybe my personal experience.

I am convinced that I stopped an attempted robbery at the front door of my home several years ago by simply not opening the door.

A stranger showed up at my door around 9 pm saying that he wanted to give me a free Denver Post. This was back when I owned a home and I looked through the front window and he had no newspaper in his hands.

He spent 10 minutes trying to get me to open that door; nothing else was going to do. I finally ended the conversation by telling him I was calling the police. I am aware that there are any number of things I could have done better but it was almost 10 years ago and Iíve learned some since then.

I believe itís prudent not to open the door to a stranger if for no other reason than I donít want to hear a pitch for meat or a vacuum cleaner or encyclopedias or magazines or an invitation to your church. By not opening the door for anyone I donít know I automatically am never faced with a situation where I open the door to a criminal.

If it is a criminal I want every advantage I can have. Why put myself in a position where I have to fight them at the door when I can just not open the door and avoid the fight altogether.
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Old 07-22-2017, 01:00 AM
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My 'old man' job has me visiting homes and knocking on doors. Without a uniform or vehicle markings, I've always been amazed how people will nonchalantly open the door to a stranger. Over the years family and friends have learned to knock on my back door...a knock at another door means stranger, answer with caution.
Our small community of Cullman Al. had a rare home invasion this week. A prominent businessman was gunned down by a certified mental person(Google) leaving his 71 year old wife in a physical life or death struggle. She won the struggle, killing the assailant with her bare hands( broken flower pot shard). Thankfully, she's recovering in intensive care. Am I the only one that answers the stranger' knock armed?

If you googled our little Cullman hamlet...check out our soon to open nations largest above ground indoor shooting range. While cruising round town you might checkout CullmanUnderground....our entertaining local gossip forum. It's mostly political arguing if you're into that. You can post anonymously without registering or logging in...and when you 1up the 7 or 8 local wizards, they'll talk nasty to you. Pose as a Democrat for immediate attention... HeHeHe....
Surely you can get a generic 'Security' T shirt and Hat
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Old 07-22-2017, 01:22 AM
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Well FWIW, when I open the door, I'm standing back almost at arm's length. One half step back and I'm clear completely . I am also leading with my left foot so my right foot/arm/side are facing away from the door into the room, and out of the path of the door swing.

The fact that I'm 6' tall and just shy of 290 pounds is a factor too. Anybody who's going to try to give me the bum's rush is gonna' find that this big boy ain't so easy to move. Hopefully looking down the barrel of my pocket pistol will discourage them from continuing to try. If not, then a couple of bullets should.

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Old 07-22-2017, 07:56 AM
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I stopped at a Ruby Tuesday's in Cullman for lunch once several years ago on the way back from Pensacola Beach. The only Ruby Tuesday's I've ever been in that didn't sell beer. My vision of the community has been colored thereafter . . .
I caught that clever wordplay!
Our community has always paled in comparison...
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Old 07-22-2017, 08:20 AM
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The Fife security plaque, "sniffing out crime, one bite at a time" should "nip it in the bud". Having the on switch for the sprinklers near the front door, good entertainment.
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Old 07-22-2017, 09:10 AM
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What reason could there possibly be to open the door to a stranger? Don't even bother speaking through the door. Nothing legitimate is sold door to door these days. We just look out a discreet window, ignore the people, and stand ready to defend in case in of invasion.
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