The Aftermath: Predators Run in Packs

Welcome to Aftermath, a portion of our First Line email newsletter where Attorney Anthony L. DeWitt walks you through a real-life self-defense incident and shares his key takeaways.

Criminals are never looking for a fight. They’re looking for victims. When three gun-toting home invaders broke into a second-story apartment in Neptune Beach, Florida, they had to first get through a locked door. Though it took less than 10 seconds for all three attackers to make it inside, the delay of a locked door allowed the resident to arm himself and find cover. The resident began shooting when the trespassers entered, hitting one of the men in the chest. They took their wounded to a hospital and drove off.

What hardware have you installed in your home to impede a break in? Do you have a home-defense checklist that you routinely review?


If they get to the front door!

I took measures long ago to ‘deter’ these vermin from getting to the door knob.
‘Lights, camera’s, action!’ flood light’s all around, camera’s same same
Huge volcanic ‘Lava’ rocks placed across the front perimeter (tasteful though
it doesn’t look like Stonehenge’.)
If they keep coming I will know about and if home will be ready.
Steel Security doors front and side along with solid doors behind them, Medeco locks
and a Steel cross beam behind. Even if you try to to smash in w/ those alphabet toy rams
all they will get is a work out an me being really pissed. NO ENTRY FOR YOU!
My ‘weak point’ was the pretty ‘Patio doors’ in back . they were replaced and I had two steel
frames made to cover the doors now that open out instead of slide. Sliding doors can be pried out.
These doors have decorative scroll work but anybody even a dumbazz banger will look @ them
and wonder where to start!. It isn’t perfect people can try to get in the windows (if they can get past the massive cactus plants (their pods make great Jelly!)
And then there is ME. ‘Move along skells, nothing to see here’.

  1. good front and patio door is the must. There is no sense to think about further plans if we give up first line of defense.

  • reinforced construction
  • 3 point locking system
  • double bolt with metal socket in the frame
  1. CCTV with push up notification

  2. Outdoor flood lights with motion detection

These 3 :point_up: give enough time to safely wait for 911 cavalry inside designated safe room.

Next step is to have a plan how to defend your self inside the home.


My house is about 45 years old, and the original builder did it with all out swinging doors. I assumed this was for hurricane wind resistance, as many older Florida houses have this. I’ve replaced all the doors with heavy reinforced solid doors, or, where there is glass, 170mph hurricane impact glass. It seems a lot lore secure, knowing someone can’t bash in the door. Now, all houses I see have inward swinging doors, and I don’t understand why. If I move, I want outswinging.


I agree with all, but the best i can do i keep a weapon close by in all my rooms out sight but ready to grab if i have time.


Outswing feature
Two locks


The first thing I did was to replace the screws on all door hinges. strike plates, and latches/dead bolts. Took out the standard 3/4" screws and put in 3 1/2" hardened sheetrock screws. This whole process took less than 1 hour (hint: replace screws only one at a time). This secured everything to the 2x4’s instead of just the door frames. Next was installation of 2 1/2" dead bolts (top, middle, and bottom of doors). In addition to exterior doors also did this on the internal “safe room.” Total cost less than $50.


We have a Steel Door and I added positive locks on all of the windows. If they do get the door open Bells ring and Bunny Frew Frew lets us know.


These doors are a great addition. Even when you open your inner door you still have bars and sturdy wire mesh between you and whoever might be on the other side.


By the way, when I open the inner door, my pistol’s unholstered.


Don’t mean to highjack this thread BUT, I answer my door with my EDC on my belt or in my hand, in my hand because it was sitting next to me when the door knocked. The people on the other side, when they see a firearm, reactions go from nothing to backing away quickly. I act like there’s nothing, I don’t even acknowledge the firearm in my hand. What do you do when you answer the door and the person reacts in some weird way?


I don’t know because my left hand is behind the door, muzzle pointed down at the ready, nothing for them to react to.

Also, not sure it’s hijacking. It’s part of my checklist.


I’ve seen at least two videos over the years of people being shot in their houses by police because they had a gun visible in their hand. One video I remember was a man, at about 2am, shot through the front window of his home. A cop had pounded on his door in the night, at the wrong house, responding to a domestic. He saw the homeowner approaching the door with a small revolver in his hand, down at his side, and the cop opened fire through the window.

I have told my wife, and I do the same, if you are going to the door armed, which you should be, keep your gun totally out of sight. For me, I always have a revolver in my pocket, so I just casually have my hand in my pocket, wrapped around the grip.


And not just from the door or any windows next to it but also out of sight from windows on other sides of the house as well. There could be other LEOs looking through those.


I’ve done the same for my house, and the last two houses.


We have cameras at all the doors, so we don’t answer the door to strangers. the cameras have intercoms so I tell them we’re not interested and to please go away. all the while with my little sidekick on my hip or in my hand.


Based on videos I have seen, if there are LEOs on the other side of the door when you answer with one of your hands out of sight, you should be prepared for them to point their firearms directly at you and repeatedly yell show me your hands. It would likely be a very tense situation.

If I was answering the door to what I thought might be legitimate LEOs on the other side I would want my hands empty and visible and preferably no weapon in sight. Though ideally they would give me the time to call 911 and confirm they are real LEOs before knocking down my door or forcing me to open it.

That is another advantage to security doors or even a standard swing out screen door with a cheap lock. If I open my inner door (which has a glass window giving me full view of what is outside) but it turns out the knockers were a threat - I can quickly duck out of their line of sight while either drawing my pocket pistol or reaching for my near the door firearm in its quick access safe. I can answer the door in a non threatening manner but still have at least several seconds to reposition and prepare a proper response while they try to get in.


So back to the original post….

The armed citizen wounded one criminal, and stopped a total of three criminals in their tracks!

Sounds like a good bedtime story to me!


That,s why you need 30 rd mags.