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Old 01-05-2007, 08:45 AM
mainlylinux mainlylinux is offline
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Gunfire near my house

Sorry to broadcast this out, but I’m looking for feedback from anyone who has any ideas on how I can solve this problem - my wife and I am terrified to leave our house at night.


Two nights ago, there were 10 to 15 gunshots fired in my neighborhood @ around 10:30 PM. I called the police (as did a bunch of other people). My wife and I went down into the basement, and waited for the 911 operator to call us back with the “all clear”.

The following day I was able to speak with a police sergeant about the incident. He verified that it was gunfire but said they were unable to find shell casings or any witnesses that would come forward, so nobody was charged with any crime. I asked how often this thing has been happening and he said “frequently” and suggested that I use the Freedom of Information Act to request records on the crime in my area.

The police think that this is drug related and they think the neighbors know what’s going on. In fact, the exact area where this is occurring is less than 1 block from me from what I’ve been told.

Obviously I can’t advertise that I am heading up some watch group or I’ll become a target. But at the same time I don’t want to wait around and become a casualty either.

Has anybody in this group dealt with anything like this before, and if so what did you do? Moving would be the worst option for me at this point; I’d loose money on my house (I just went through bankruptcy in August 2006). How can this happen in our country? I feel like I’m living in Iraq.


All suggestions are welcome.

Thanks,

Dan
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Old 01-05-2007, 08:51 AM
randy randy is offline
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Shooting back might quiet things down if the right people get shot.
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Old 01-05-2007, 08:57 AM
mainlylinux mainlylinux is offline
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By the way, my wife is pregnant.

I did take a M44 Rifle into my basement with me, but I wouldn't shoot unless there was no alternative (not sure what a rifle bullet does when it hits 10 inch poured concrete call).

Dan
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Old 01-05-2007, 09:10 AM
randy randy is offline
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The 5-shot Soviet bolt action?

Perfect for home defense.
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Old 01-05-2007, 09:15 AM
mainlylinux mainlylinux is offline
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Yep, the 5 shot soviet model. Has the soviet hammer and sickle on it. Problem is that its projectile is very penetrating, which could lead to collateral damage if I ever had to fire it from within in my house. The round is fairly close ballistically to a 30-06 according to a library book I read.

Around here you can get that model for 120 bucks all day long. And the surplus ammo is dirt cheap too.

Dan
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Old 01-05-2007, 10:17 AM
randy randy is offline
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It will break a concrete block in half at 50 yds. Don't ask me how I know!
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Old 01-05-2007, 02:03 PM
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We had to deal with the same thing a few years ago. We lived in the North East part of Columbus, Ohio. Our street was a cul de sac with no thru traffic. We also had great neighbors. Because of the lower property rates because of the neighbor hood we had probally twice the house we could afford. We would hear gunshots just about every night. Including full auto a couple of times. I talked with the police and they said that the answer was to move. They pretty much said they only went out when someone called. If they heard shots but no calls they just ignored it.
So we did. Higher payment for less place and no garage. But no shots being heard. We moved to a suburb north of Columbus. The difference here is that the people will cooperate with the police when something happens.
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Old 01-05-2007, 02:23 PM
mainlylinux mainlylinux is offline
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jeffe - I think that's what's going to happen for me. I'm not sure how quickly at this point, but it's a chance I'm not willing to take with my family.

Real bummer too, because I just got the basement setup with my shop lights and benches, etc.

The more I think it through, the more I realize that there's nothing I can do (or willing to do more like it) to stop this.

I _have_ something to loose. Sticking my nose in it will get me into trouble fast. These people don't care if they go to prison, or if they do, they don't care very much.

That's why the only real option for me is moving. The police said the same thing to me that they did to you - if they don't catch anyone, what can they do?


Dan
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Old 01-05-2007, 03:09 PM
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What can I say. They also said if you think you are going to protect yourself with your own gun you are probally in for a suprise. They feel outgunned and alot of the guys have M-16 type guns and bullet proof vests. And they can call for back up. Your bath robe or jammies are not goin to help much.
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Old 01-05-2007, 03:46 PM
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This probably isn't much help, but a shotgun is about the best home defense weapon you can buy - don't have to worry nearly as much about overpenetration and if you are within 10 feet of the target, the target is going to be disabled. It's the original point and click interface.

I wouldn't advise using a rifle for home defense or 9mm pistol..I've got a 45 with hollow points to prevent rounds from going through numerous walls.
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Old 01-05-2007, 04:34 PM
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Sorry.. I typed this up before I saw what Snow said... I guess I just seconded his motion...

First off, I'm glad you're all OK. Most of what I say is simply MY opinion, which matters little at this point. This isn't happeneing to me, so it's easy for me to sit and tell someone what they should do. I personally would hate to see you move because of this. If you read about things like this, and if it is a drug house, it's almost always going to be a rent house involved. To fight the problem, you are going to have to get ALL of the homeowners or RESPECTABLE renters in the area involved. Here's some info in PDF format. You can do a search online and find more about it. Every state has info on it to help people like you. Police personell have their hands tied because the laws that protect us... also protect the criminals, so any help you can give them helps. They can't always be there waiting around and watching... that's where you come in. But you can request that that they make routine drive-by's. Talk to your neighbors secretly and involve everyone. They all have a stake in this. It just seems a waste to me for a whole neighborhood to go bad from one house. It's kind of like throwing all the good apples out of a basket because you found a bad one... and left the bad one there. I don't know if it's a meth house or not, but this would still apply.



PDF link


I also must recommend a better home defense weapon. Yours is great for a single shot, but terrible for follow up shots if quickly needed. Also.. what happenes to that high powered round after it strikes it target (And quickly passes through) or you miss. It could be lethal to bystanders for a long long distance. We could easily have a HUGE thread on the best home defense weapons.. but for close to medium ranges, it is terribly hard to beat a simple shotgun... pump or auto... loaded with doublle 00 buckshot. It wouldn't be legal to hunt with, but you could pull the plug out of the magazine and most will hold between 5-7 shells like that, and you can pick up a used one up very reasonably.

Again, as stated, this is simply MY opinion. I'm not trying to win an endoresment form the NRA and I don't know Charlton Heston. I tend to fight back when pushed, and it's not always the best option. A firearm for me is a tool and an option... NOT a last resort. If someone starts shooting live rouinds around my family, that option is going to speed it's way up my list in very quick fashion. I have an intense desire to protect my family AND hard earned property, and would do anything I could to keep from having some thugs ruin the value of my neighborhood. That being said... this is completely your decision. Keep us informed.

Tod
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Old 01-05-2007, 06:00 PM
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Hey Dan,

There's a couple of cops on the YAHOO mailing list, I'll drop a copy of what you've posted here, and get their opinions, options, they are always happy to give that!!

But, I, too, think like Tod in that I would do the things necessary to protect my family and property, but without putting it at more risk, like you said, trying to remain anonymous!

Talking to neighbors might help to narrow down which house it's occuring in. Video Tape is a great ally to law enforcement. Perhaps a hidden camera could be setup in a house proximal to the "bad" house to document what's going on. Might need to contact the Police to find out what criteria might be needed to help verify that the video tape was marked for reliable evidence, like date/time stamp, or video of current newspaper headlines on uncut section of video that offenses are recorded on(uncut no editting)!?

Best of luck!
T.C.
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Old 01-05-2007, 08:05 PM
mainlylinux mainlylinux is offline
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Thanks guys for all the suggestions. Here's probably what I'll be doing in the immediate future:

Move temporarily to a relative's house. This gives me time to get away from the situation without any stress. Time to think clearly about how I want to proceed.

Request information from the Police department regarding the reported crimes over the last year or two in a several block radius from my house.

Discuss with my 2 trusted neighbors possibly sending letters to the mayor, the city council, and the local newspaper and radio station.

Repeat the previous step often to get somebody's attention.

I'll tell you this, it totally sucks. I've lived here over 9 years; this is my first home. I own it free and clear. I'm not ready to move yet.

But regardless of that, I could never ever forgive myself if something happened to my family and I could have prevented it.


On the flip side: we've wanted to move to a better neighborhood for a while, but we haven't felt that we were financially ready.

I want a house in the country anyway. I want to be able to do a nice 0 to 60 mph at full throttle on my street without passing anyone's house but my own.

And about the gun: I do actually have a 12 guage, but it's a single shot. I've stopped at the gun store probably at least 10 times in the past 5 years looking at "home protection" type weapons. I even took the concealed weapons class for this area about 2 years ago. I could carry if I wanted to, I just need to spend 2 more hours on the range. but the problem is (as I learned from the police who helped instruct the class) that using a weapon is wrong 99% of the time. There's a specific time when it's ok to use. If somebody is shooting at my house, the law says I should try and "get away" in my case that is going into the basement. Using force is only ok if it's the last resort/only way. Another thing is that once the bullet leaves my gun it's my responsibility (if I hit someone innocent I just commited a crime). I hope nobody ever has to be in that situation. Basically, you need to believe you're gonna die or your family member is. And a prosecutor/jury has to believe that as well. Otherwise you just commited a crime in Michigan.

Whew. I never dreamed I'd ever write a post like that! It's like a bad dream...


Dan
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Old 01-05-2007, 10:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by mainlylinux


I want a house in the country anyway.

Dan
I was going to suggest that. Population will always have problems...the more, the worse.

When my neighbor hears gunshots, he usually grabs his rifle and comes back there with me to shoot.

I've got both M44 and M91/30 Mosin-Nagant variants. Great old rifles, but I can't imagine using them for home defense. Kinda like weilding a tree when a stick will do just fine.

A shotty really is the best for home defense in terms of stopping power and lack of overpenetration.

Most of the time though, I depend on my good ol' AK. Noone here for me to worry about shooting through a wall other than someone that needs to be shot.
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Old 01-05-2007, 10:18 PM
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I have never had that problem really before. Although, long ago, that would have been me you heard firing away in the back yard. I would shoot my little .22 bolt action at a big dirt pile in the yard just for practice. Then when the Police got serious, I got a cross bow for the quietness. For self defense, sometimes the best weapon is the most scary looking. You know they say that the best way to get a thief out of your house it to let them hear you 12Gauge as you load and cock. I like my Yugo SKS very much. It has little recoil because of it large mass. The ammo is fairly cheap and it will do plenty of damage. The semi-auto is nice too. Now, if you have a m1 or any 30-06 rifle, no one will come near you. And, they are fun to shoot. As an added bonus, to hear the clip eject is one unique sound. As for your neighborhood, there isn't much you can do except be prepared. Do you have a concealed handgun license. That is the first thing On my agenda when I am of age. My dad has told me plenty of stories of people at rest areas and other dark places that would make you chill. WE never take a trip(motorcycle or car) without Mr smith and Mr Wesson
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