Indiana residents are known as an independent lot, quick to take responsibility for their own actions. Many are also quick to take responsibility for their own safety and the safety of others, as seen in these seven recent incidents of armed self-defense by Hoosiers.
Though an Indianapolis woman was a little shaken up after using her gun to ward off assailants, she said she hopes the story about her willingness to protect herself sends a strong message to other women about staying alert and defending themselves. As she returned to her home one day at 1 a.m., the woman—identified only as Crystal—said she was approached by three men. “[One armed assailant] grabbed at me and turned around and shot, and they ran,” Crystal said. Two of the would-be robbers escaped through a hole in a fence and were still at large when the story was reported. The third suspect, who suffered a gunshot wound to his shoulder, was arrested and hospitalized. “Honestly, I mostly carry it because my dad wanted me to,” Crystal said. “Now, I’m glad I listed.” (WTHR.com, Indianapolis, Ind., 4/10/15)
Indianapolis Metropolitan Police have arrested two people in connection with a home invasion that turned deadly for an accomplice. A 25-year-old woman and a 22-year-old man allegedly kicked in the door of a home and entered with weapons. The resident, who was at home with his fiancée during the break-in, retrieved his firearm and fired multiple times, hitting the male intruder in the abdomen. The two suspects fled, and the injured man later died in a local hospital. The female and another individual were later apprehended and charged with attempted robbery with a deadly weapon and burglary with a deadly weapon. The home dweller was unharmed and cooperated with detectives. (The Indianapolis Star, Indianapolis, Ind., 12/25/14)
Two Orange County brothers, Barry and Terah Forst, secured their elderly mother in an interior room of their residence before investigating a suspicious noise in the wee hours of the morning. A 23-year-old armed stranger had entered the home. After Barry found the man in the basement, the intruder attacked, punching him and brandishing a knife. Terah then entered the room and shot and killed the intruder. Police said the crime appeared to be random. (Times-Mail, Bedford, Ind., 11/26/14)
Homeowner Thomas Patterson, 71, woke to noises coming from inside his home around 6 a.m. He quickly retrieved his firearm and opened the bedroom door. Patterson recalled, “The man, I could see him trying to duck into the closet in the next room and I just told him, ‘Come out of there, Bud.’” Patterson then held the 22-year-old intruder at gunpoint while he called 911 and waited for police to arrive. No injuries were reported and no shots were fired during the break-in. (WTHR, Indianapolis, Ind., 8/4/14)
Joshua Black, 27, was with several others when they heard someone else inside his home around 1 p.m. Three suspects were already on their way out with a stolen handgun and two televisions before Black discovered they were there. Gunfire erupted between Black and the suspects, one of whom was fatally wounded. No other injuries were reported. One of Black’s neighbors said, “… if [the homeowner] didn’t have a gun, he might be the one who was killed. You got to do what you got to do [sic] to protect yourself.” (Guns.com, Indianapolis, Ind., 8/1/14)
Around 3:15 a.m., homeowner James Moore woke up and noticed that some outside lights had been turned on. When he heard a noise in the kitchen, he went to investigate and found a man rummaging through the refrigerator. Moore quietly backed out of the kitchen and returned to the bedroom where he kept his pistol, then asked his wife to call police and lock the bedroom door. When deputies arrived at the Moore home, they found Moore holding the 19-year-old intruder at gunpoint. The intruder had kicked in two doors in order to gain entry. A flatbed trailer, a four-wheeler and a lawn tractor were also damaged during the incident. The intruder was arrested on charges of felony burglary, malicious injury to property and underage alcohol consumption. There were no shots fired and the Moores were not injured during the break-in. (Local News 8, Idaho Falls, Ind., 4/7/14)
Scott Giles’ fiancée heard a disturbance in the living room of their home. When she went to investigate, she was surprised to find an armed intruder wearing a hooded sweatshirt and face paint. Giles found himself at gunpoint after responding to his fiancée’s scream. The intruder demanded Giles’ wallet, then commanded him to open a safe in their bedroom. When Giles’ fiancée realized that their children had awakened due to the disturbance, she took action in an effort to protect them. She grabbed a walking stick and swung it at the intruder giving Giles enough time to grab his own firearm. Giles fired, causing the intruder to flee. Although the suspect left a trail of blood, he is reportedly still at large. Giles said, “I wanted to save my family. That’s what’s precious to me.” (WTHR.com, Bloomington, Ind., 2/22/14)