Preparing for an Intruder in Your Home

It is difficult to determine how you would react if you came face-to-face with an intruder in your home, especially if the intruder were armed or intended to harm any of your family members. The most important thing to remember is to stay calm and that the first thing anyone who spots an intruder should do is call the police.

Use the following tips to become prepared for a home intruder:

  • Put an emergency plan in place and discuss it with everyone in your household. Include the following:
    • Determine a system for notifying others in the house of the intruder.
    • Designate an escape route, if feasible, from the home if it is possible the intruder is armed and dangerous.
    • Discuss other emergency action steps and make sure everyone is aware what kind of action he or she should take in the event of an intruder.
  • Take any measure possible to let the intruder know someone is home and aware of his or her presence.
  • Do not assume the intruder is unarmed. He or she may be concealing a knife or gun and could produce it at a moment’s notice.
  • If you have something immediately available you can use for defense, such as a baseball bat, use it, even if it is just a scare tactic and you do not plan to swing it.
  • Be a good observer. Take note of the intruder’s physical characteristics and provide the most accurate description possible to the police if he/she gets away.

In most states, it is legal to use force against someone who is not authorized to be in your house or on your property; however, avoid using deadly force because of the risk of being arrested or facing serious charges.

Additionally, avoid using violence at all costs. If you injure an intruder, you could end up in a legal battle or having to pay him/her a large amount of money for the injuries, as unfair as it seems

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