Dawn, I won’t play mighta, shoulda, woulda, coulda. Two old saws to come into play. Run, Hide, Fight from active threats, and from aviation, Aviate, Navigate, Communicate. In this case your friend recognized a potential threat, withdrew (run) to a safe place (hide), and called police. Ditto for the aviation saying, she left by car (aviated), went to safe place (navigated), and called the police (communicated). As another commenter said, the best fight to have is the one you can avoid. That said, let me describe what I have done to harden the target vis a vis my home.
Dusk to dawn perimeter lighting in the soffets along the entire front of the house. Three type of cameras with infrared capability. 1) Radio Frequency cameras powered by house current via outside outlets. This system does not rely on the internet/wi fi router, but transmit directly to a DVR. Weaknesses are poor night time resolution and are inoperable inthe absence of power. 2) A nest cam positioned inside shooting through a window that has motion alerts by e mail and direct to phone. The normal IR illumination reflection that would occur at night is overcome by the dusk to dawn lighting, so the camera functions well at night. 3) Battery powered Blink cameras front, sides, and rear of the home. Front and rear cameras are paired with overlapping fields of view, so when Mr Murphy raises his ugly head and batteries die, odds are the paired camera still operates. The Blink cameras are phone based only, and provide alerts if motion is detected. Weaknesses of the nest and blink cameras include power interrupts and internet/wi fi router malfunctions.
Monitored intrusion alarm system provided by Guardian in Pittsburgh PA, which include contact alarms on all windows and doors as well as glass break detectors. Reinforced (long screw) door striker plates and a positive reinforced hinged block secured to the door frame with 4 3" screws for the front door. I usually leave it engaged and come and go through garage.
Not fool proof. But, does help to deny access and gives me notice that something or someone is creeping about the home in my absence.
In the instant case, a door contact alarm would have alerted the homeowner/monitoring company of a breech before she arrived home, allowing her to stand off and avoid contact/confrontation. Motion detecting cameras with a phone notification would also give the homeowner a heads up and allow options to avoid contact. All of this presumes that Mr. Murphy took a vacation and the various systems were activated and operating normally.
I’m glad your friend is safe and all in the forum are reflecting and can learn from her experience. USCCA is so good at sharing real life experiences to the benefit of its membership.