Home Invasion Story Highlights Classic Door Ambush
Waukegan, IL — The Waukegan Police Department was called out to a home invasion this past week and arrived on scene to find two male bodies laying in the front yard, deceased.
The incident took place at the 100 block of Frolic Avenue at about 10 am when two men attempted to gain entry to the home by knocking on the front door dressed as gas company employees. A young female on the inside heard the loud knocking and opened the door to see who was there.
Once the door was opened the two men forced their way inside.
It has been reported at this time that the two men were brothers and that there was one handgun, a revolver, that they shared.
The female screamed for help and dialed the police. The scream triggered a 30-something year old male who rents a room on a lower level to come up from the downstairs, armed with his own pistol and engaged the two men.
One of them was hit, causing the other brother to grab the gun and arm of his injured brother in an attempt to reportedly to drag him outside, likely to make an attempt at escaping. When the tenant saw the other brother grab the revolver, he went back downstairs.
He then returned with a rifle (news outlets are calling it an “assault rifle, so it's probably an AR-15 or variant of) and then re-engaged the other man while he was outside.
Multiple gun shots were exchanged, but ultimately the other brother was hit. Nobody else was harmed, to include a toddler that the female was reportedly baby sitting.
The tenant reportedly has his FOID card (firearm owner ID card), but the two invaders did not.
It is a tried and true tactic for criminals to impersonate legitimate employees of companies to show that they've got a reason to be at your house. Their goal is to attract less attention from your neighbors, but seem legit enough that you'll open your door to see what they need.
But then the unexpecting person at home opens the door only to find intruders forcing their way inside. What are their intentions? At this point you can only speculate as to whether or not they'll only take your stuff, or add your life to the list.
Your job as a homeowner, or as a resident in a home, is to prevent the bad guys from gaining entry as much as you possibly can. Your life depends on it.
The young girl who was at this house baby sitting a toddler never should have opened the door (though I'd feel irresponsible if I didn't state that they could have still gotten in if they were determined enough). It is unclear if she lives in this house or if the toddler she's baby sitting is a family member, but none of that really matters.
The door should have stayed closed. One report I read made it sound like the knocking on the door was getting increasingly louder, almost as if someone was kicking the door. I can almost guarantee you that a legit employee isn't going to be kicking down a door.
At this point, before opening the door, calling for help would have been an acceptable thing to do.
Now comes the shameless plug. This sort of break-in happens so often that we created a 48 minute training video surrounding this called Door Ambush. But here's the thing, this is only one of the possible scenarios that could happen, and there are a ton of ways that you can fix your house to make it so this doesn't happen to you or at least prevent it long enough that you can figure out your next step.
This training of ours is almost an hour long, plays out scenarios of real life incidents, gives you tips and pointers, and isn't even $10 MSRP.
Again, here's the link for this invaluable training video.
Good for the tenant. Prime example of a good guy with a gun doing what’s right.
Q: Once the intruders have exited the premises, one of them wounded, is it really wise to change up to a “better” weapon and pursue them outside?
Doesn’t that create greater possibility of the defender being charged?
Yes we would usually advise against engaging a target once the threat is over. We weren’t there and don’t know if they were still firing as they were escaping. Nor do we know if the guy who went to get his rifle needed to do so for some reason, like if he had a catastrophic firearm failure.
These are all possibilities, and we tend to write our DGU stories based on reports we read, meaning that we don’t always have the full picture. But yes, to answer your question once the threat is over disengaging is usually the best idea. If they’re retreating but still firing, that may be a different scenario altogether.
Thanks for the comment, Josh.
I agree once the threat was mitigated there was no reason to engage the brothers outside the house. One was wounded and it appeared the the other was helping his brother to leave. Had the neighbor not engaged and fired on them I think it would have ended. In my opinion he was wrong in escalating the incident.
Seems like once the invaders have started to escape, you need to let them go. Otherwise you’re no longer in self-defense mode.
And if some third party got wounded as a result of the outside gunfire, the defense could wind up liable for unlawful discharge of the weapon.