An as-yet-unnamed man’s drunken antics nearly cost him his life when he broken into the home of an armed nurse, 36-year-old Deborah Krasienko.
“I would have shot him had my daughter been home, just out of fear for her safety,” she said. “I almost killed this man, just because he was too dumb and drunk to know what he was doing.”
From the story, Krasienko had just gotten home from work Saturday morning when the drunken intruder began pounding on her front door. She retrieved her handgun as he went around the house and entered through the rear door, breaking the screen door and using the keys she had left in the lock to unlock the back door. He eventually realized she was armed and fled the scene, later to be picked up by the police, positively identified by Krasienko, then driven home.
Hindsight is always 20-20, and it turned out the intruder was non-violent, but it certainly could have ended much worse.
Krasienko was wise to arm herself when her home was threatened but admits exhaustion lead to her mistake of leaving the keys in the back door lock. Had she not done that, he might not have even been able to enter the house.
Once he entered the house, some would recommend using deadly force immediately. It takes only seconds for an intruder to charge and close the distance in most rooms, and a person impaired by drugs or alcohol has diminished capacity to feel pain. Even if such a person was fatally hit he may live long enough to cause significant bodily harm or death. In fact, Krasienko acknowledged the danger by stating she wouldn’t have taken the risk had her daughter been home.
That said, I believe she made the right choice. Pulling the trigger is a last resort and she still had options available. Hopefully she had furniture between herself and the intruder, but even if she didn’t I think it was a reasonable risk to avoid loss of life.
She stated that once he had entered the house he had gotten distracted by her puppy and hadn’t even acknowledged her presence yet. Although he had entered her home it seems clear he didn’t know where he was and was not yet a threat. Once the reality of the situation sunk in he quickly fled the scene. Had he advanced towards her then she would have been forced to defend herself.
When confronted by a situation like this you will have just seconds to make decisions that will affect your life and the lives of others. Using situations like this as a learning experience can help prepare you for what your response will be and make the decision easier.
Securing your home should always be a top priority. Be sure to lock all your doors and windows and remove the keys from the door. Everyone gets tired but you must focus on this detail.
Arm yourself at the first sign of danger. Had Krasienko waited and the intruder been violent she might not have had time to get her gun once he gained entry.
If an intruder does gain access, get him/her out. Do not try to capture the intruder. They could feign compliance while waiting for the opportune moment to attack. Getting them out is a much safer option. Order them to leave clearly and simply.
During the confrontation, try to maintain your distance and keep furniture between you and them as an impediment. Watch for signs of aggression or weapons. A weapon in hand is an immediate cue to act.
Hopefully you’ll never find yourself in a situation like this but if you do, and have considered your options in advanced, it is more likely to end in a positive manner.