Many home owners have a false sense of security when it come to being in their house. When we are home we feel safe, because the dangerous world is on the other side of the door and walls of our house. Even people who live in gated communities have a false sense of security because not just anyone can come into their neighborhood. But think again on July 21st, 2010 at around 2:45 a.m. Renata Jackson, the wife of Charlotte Bobcats player, Stephen Jackson, was held up at the family’s home by three men. The burglars broke into the home holding her at gunpoint before locking her in a bathroom, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police reported. The home is in a gated community of two dozen million-dollar homes. The fact is that many of you are not prepared for a home invasion.
You may have seen the headlines
Home invasion, defined as “burglary of a lodging while the residents are at home,” typically leads to other crimes once the intruder has entered the home, sometimes as serious as sexual assault, rape or murder. According to the US Department of Justice (DOJ) a burglary happens every 10 seconds and 1 property crime happened every 3 seconds in this country. The most alarming fact about a home invasion is that the perpetrator can often perform the crimes without being detected by your neighbors or potential aid just outside your home. I’m sure you have heard of home invasion s on the news, and recent statistics suggest that this form of burglary is on the rise, so the probability of you becoming a victim is increasing.
Those who engage in home invasion have two methods of gaining access to your home. The first method is the simple break-in. It has been declared that burglars only need about 60 seconds to break into most homes. Recent FBI statistics claim that only one out of every four burglaries involve forced entry. The easiest way for a criminal to get into your house is just to kick-in your door! The FBI says every 12 seconds a home is invaded by going right through the front or back door. Most burglars enter homes through an open or unlocked window or door. By making it more difficult for intruders to get into your residence, you can greatly reduce your chances of being a robbery victim. The more a burglar has to work to get into your home, or the more likely the burglar thinks he may get caught the less chance you have of becoming his victim.
The second method is to trick you into letting them into your house. The most common entry points are through the front door, or in the case of a surprise attack, through the homeowner’s garage. Most invasions take place simply because the intruder knocked or rang the bell and the homeowner opened the door. The attack can either be swift or violent or the attacker may pretend to be someone who is ordinary or trusted by you. In some cases, victims may even receive a false phone call informing them that they are about to receive a delivery or a maintenance call from a repairman.
Here are some other statistical faces from the DOJ:
- One in five homes undergoes a home invasion or break-in.
- Burglary of residential properties accounted for 67.9 percent of all burglary offenses
- There are more than 8,000 home invasions every day in North America
- 50% of home invasions incidents involve the use of a weapon; the most common weapons used are cutting instruments
- In 68% of home invasions incidents, victims and the accused are strangers; in 11% of these cases, victims and the accused are friends, associates, or family
- In 48% of home invasions incidents the victims sustain physical injuries
- In 38% of home invasion incidents involve assaults and 60% involve rape.
In our home invasion series we gave you lots of advice of how to prepare you home:
- Don’t let anyone in your home unless you absolutely know who they are.
- Use doors with solid cores rather than hollow wooden doors, complete with good heavy-duty locks to prevent lock bumping
- Install security devices in windows such as alarm systems or bars.
- Utilize all locks on any entrance into your home. It’s easy to get in an unlocked door
- Lighting is an important crime deterrent. Your home should be well-lit.
- Install and use a fish eye peephole in your doors to assess visitors before opening the door
- Install and set home security systems to prevent a home invasion while you are asleep
- If you are suspicious of visitors, alert neighbors or Neighborhood Watch groups
- Talk to your family about the possibility of a home invasion and proper preventative measures. Discuss escape plans in the event they become necessary
- Even if you don’t have a dog you should probably buy an “Beware of dog” and place the sign at strategic places
Related Blog Entries
- HOME INVASIONS – Part 1 – What you should know
- Knock, Knock – Home Invasion Tips
- HOME INVASIONS – Part 2 – Defensive strategies (ii)
- Defending Your Castle Part 2
- HOME INVASIONS – Part 2 – Defensive strategies – Alarms Systems (iii)
- Protecting the Elderly
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