Knock at the door claiming to be the police

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Schleprock
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Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Schleprock » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:32 pm

First of all, from personal sentiment as well as in deference to the revised Forum Rule 9, this post is in no way meant to even approach the bashing of law enforcement.

With that out of the way, while I was away at my Mom's, my cell rang at 10:30 pm last night. My wife was calling from the house phone (who still has these things other than old folk?) talking in a hushed tone relaying that someone had knocked on the door claiming to be the police but she had looked outside (away from the door) and saw no cars that resembled those from our municipality. She said the person outside told her that our house alarm was reported as having gone off, walking around shining a flashlight. I said to call the police (to verify if an officer had been dispatched to our address) and hung up. I hurriedly explained the situation to my mother and hastened out to the car. As I pulled away, I realized I had not directed my wife to retrieve the handgun secreted away and called her on her cell as I headed out but got no answer. My Mom is less than 2 miles away and admittedly, I sped a bit in getting back home. It took me less than 3 minutes to arrive and as I did, I saw a marked unit parked near the house but out of any sightline accessible from the front windows. I drove alongside but saw no one in the cruiser initially but as I pulled away I saw the officer return to his car from across the street. I backed up and asked if he had been to my home to which he replied he had. He admitted that he was on the wrong street. Then he said, "If your wife would have looked out, she would have seen my car." I said, "Your car is not in front of my house," but quite honestly, I didn't want to argue because I was relieved that it was actually an officer and let it go wanting to get to my wife as I proceeded around the alley to the garage. I called again, this time on the house phone, figuring I needed to let her know I was there and went inside to debrief.

Admittedly, several mistakes were committed.
1. Most egregiously I did not have a plan of action. :confused5
2. The Mrs. did not retrieve a weapon.
3. She stayed on the landline.
4. She did not move to cover.
5. We were not prepared (see mistake 1). :nono:

Alright, I'm pretty thick-skinned so your suggestions will help tremendously as we look at different scenarios and attempt to prepare for what may inevitably be visited upon us.

Thanks in advance!
05/04/12 Plastic in hand (52 days MTM)


mtnthundr2
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby mtnthundr2 » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:58 pm

Schleprock wrote:First of all, from personal sentiment as well as in deference to the revised Forum Rule 9, this post is in no way meant to even approach the bashing of law enforcement.

With that out of the way, while I was away at my Mom's, my cell rang at 10:30 pm last night. My wife was calling from the house phone (who still has these things other than old folk?) talking in a hushed tone relaying that someone had knocked on the door claiming to be the police but she had looked outside (away from the door) and saw no cars that resembled those from our municipality. She said the person outside told her that our house alarm was reported as having gone off, walking around shining a flashlight. I said to call the police (to verify if an officer had been dispatched to our address) and hung up. I hurriedly explained the situation to my mother and hastened out to the car. As I pulled away, I realized I had not directed my wife to retrieve the handgun secreted away and called her on her cell as I headed out but got no answer. My Mom is less than 2 miles away and admittedly, I sped a bit in getting back home. It took me less than 3 minutes to arrive and as I did, I saw a marked unit parked near the house but out of any sightline accessible from the front windows. I drove alongside but saw no one in the cruiser initially but as I pulled away I saw the officer return to his car from across the street. I backed up and asked if he had been to my home to which he replied he had. He admitted that he was on the wrong street. Then he said, "If your wife would have looked out, she would have seen my car." I said, "Your car is not in front of my house," but quite honestly, I didn't want to argue because I was relieved that it was actually an officer and let it go wanting to get to my wife as I proceeded around the alley to the garage. I called again, this time on the house phone, figuring I needed to let her know I was there and went inside to debrief.

Admittedly, several mistakes were committed.
1. Most egregiously I did not have a plan of action. :confused5
2. The Mrs. did not retrieve a weapon.
3. She stayed on the landline.
4. She did not move to cover.
5. We were not prepared (see mistake 1). :nono:

Alright, I'm pretty thick-skinned so your suggestions will help tremendously as we look at different scenarios and attempt to prepare for what may inevitably be visited upon us.

Thanks in advance!



First off, what a great post!! Thank you for sharing it with us so that we may learn from it but, most importantly, open a dialog with our family members about this type of scenario.
And second, thank God it all ended well and nobody was hurt.

So I have to look at the things you both did that was RIGHT .....
1. The Mrs DIDN'T open the door (no matter what she heard on the other side)
2. She called for "back-up" (although it might have been better to call 911 to confirm for herself that it was truly an officer out there. I totally understand reaching out to your husband first, I'm sure I would have too!)

I think maybe some things could have happened a bit differently (with some planning ahead of time for just this type of scenario)
1. Stay on the phone with the person in the house to help calm them and direct them to the weapon and a safe place to hide (while help is on the way).
2. Consider switching to the cell phone??? (not so sure about this one, sometimes cell signal can be unreliable)
3. While on the phone with the person in the house, direct someone else to call the police to report/inquire about the events taking place at the address.

These were just my initial thoughts but I KNOW I'll be thinking about this one for a few days, running different scenarios through my head and talking it over with my husband. I'll be watching this thread closely to see others thoughts and ideas!
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Keith B » Tue Jul 01, 2014 8:01 am

This is not a violation to rule 9 as it happened directly to you/family. Glad all went well and that you are working on tweaking your response plan.
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TomsTXCHL
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby TomsTXCHL » Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:58 am

Yikes there was potential for disaster with this one wasn't there. With no vehicle in sight, I'd probably have suspected a BG also.

We live in the country where anyone who might come to our door would have to get past 3 "secure" gates, one of which is chained & padlocked, so my wife is inclined to "shoot first and ask questions later", though I suppose if a vehicle with flashing lights is outside...a police helicopter maybe??? :eek6
Last edited by TomsTXCHL on Tue Jul 01, 2014 4:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby VMI77 » Tue Jul 01, 2014 11:19 am

Is there any place you could have placed a camera that would have revealed the police vehicle? At a minimum you should have a camera showing who is at your front door, and ideally, covering all entrances. I have 360 degree camera coverage, and the first thing I do at an unexpected knock is check the cameras.
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Charles L. Cotton » Tue Jul 01, 2014 11:34 am

Thanks for the post; it's a great reminder that complacency can be deadly. That's what caused everything you noted that you didn't do.

Lest you think I'm jumping on you, here are my TWO stories. (There should never be more than one.) My wife and I have had more tactical training than any other married couple I know. We used to go to Thunder Ranch at least once a year, sometimes twice. We took Team Tactics every year for 10 years and we are really good at clearing a building and fighting together. So, two highly trained people had no excuse for what happened.

One morning about 1:30am our home alarm went off. Our youngest son was still living at home at the time and he ran downstairs without a gun and without letting us know it was him coming at light speed. My wife jumped up and ran to the alarm pad to turn it off, also without her gun. The phone rang and I answered it. It was ADT asking about the alarm and I told them "everything is fine" and I gave them the pass code. I had no idea if "everything was fine!" At least I did take my gun when I joined my wife and son. Complacency combined with being awakened from a deep sleep to create a potentially deadly scenario.

A few years ago long after our sons had grown up and left home, my wife and I were sitting in the family room watching TV. There was a loud noise upstairs that startled even the dogs. Martha and I grabbed our pistols and headed to the stairs. Remember, she and I had cleared countless buildings and rooms and we knew how to do this well. Unfortunately, there are two stairs to the 2nd floor and both of them effectively rise from the floor of the 2nd story, when viewed by someone on the 2nd floor. (This is a nightmare scenario, even worse than the dreaded 180 degree blind doorway. Doing this perfectly can still get you killed.) I was in the lead and whispered instructions to Martha -- no response. I looked to my right where she should have been only to see her standing at the bottom of the staircase holding her pistol to her side. (Not covering me.) I signaled to "get up here;" she did and we cleared the 2nd floor. When it was over and I asked her "why the heck didn't you come with me so we could work this problem together," and she said "I didn't think there was anything to it. Something just fell over." She was right, but once again complacency could have been deadly.

I find it amazing how hard it sometimes is to apply training and even drills to real-life settings. Since these two incidents many years ago, we've had false alarms at home, people ringing the door bell at very late hours, things that go bump in the night, and other things that raise the alert level. We handled them correctly in large part because of the above-related incidents. When the Lord saves us from our own potentially fatal mistakes we need to learn from them and not let our tombstone read "He died because he was stupid."

Thanks again for your post.
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Texsquatch » Tue Jul 01, 2014 12:32 pm

I'm not sure what the correct procedure is, but through my TV research of countless hours of COPS, I noticed that most of the time the officer parks away from the address, or at least not directly in front, and walks up to the door.

A LEO friend of mine recently dropped by while on duty, and even though he was expected, I noticed he parked before my driveway, closer to my neighbor. My driveway is long so I never saw his car until I actually went outside as I walked him out. I was in the formal dining room with other another friend at the front of the house and didn't see his car through the window since he parked in the street. I think I'll ask him about this as I see some advantage to him walking up, but if it was an unexpected knock and "police" I'm not sure I would immediately open the door since the car wasn't visible through the peep hole or front windows.

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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Schleprock » Tue Jul 01, 2014 4:13 pm

mtnthundr2 wrote:So I have to look at the things you both did that was RIGHT .....
1. The Mrs DIDN'T open the door (no matter what she heard on the other side)
2. She called for "back-up" (although it might have been better to call 911 to confirm for herself that it was truly an officer out there. I totally understand reaching out to your husband first, I'm sure I would have too!)

I think maybe some things could have happened a bit differently (with some planning ahead of time for just this type of scenario)
1. Stay on the phone with the person in the house to help calm them and direct them to the weapon and a safe place to hide (while help is on the way).
2. Consider switching to the cell phone??? (not so sure about this one, sometimes cell signal can be unreliable)
3. While on the phone with the person in the house, direct someone else to call the police to report/inquire about the events taking place at the address.

These were just my initial thoughts but I KNOW I'll be thinking about this one for a few days, running different scenarios through my head and talking it over with my husband. I'll be watching this thread closely to see others thoughts and ideas!




Neither she or I have beat ourselves up too badly, just resolved to learn from my mistakes. The fact that she didn't open the door was what I was most proud of, considering our lack of preparation and practice . Great feedback.
05/04/12 Plastic in hand (52 days MTM)

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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Schleprock » Tue Jul 01, 2014 4:21 pm

TomsTXCHL wrote:Yikes there was potential for disaster with this one wasn't there. With no vehicle in sight, I'd probably have suspected a BG also.




All I could think of initially when she called was that someone was impersonating an officer and then the story from about a year ago in Ft. Worth http://texaschlforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=108&t=66546&hilit=fort+worth+man+shot+accidentally+wrong+house#p816371 came to mind as I was driving. Thank The Good Lord everything turned out well.
05/04/12 Plastic in hand (52 days MTM)

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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby budroux2w » Tue Jul 01, 2014 5:01 pm

mtnthundr2 wrote:First off, what a great post!! Thank you for sharing it with us so that we may learn from it but, most importantly, open a dialog with our family members about this type of scenario.
And second, thank God it all ended well and nobody was hurt.


+1

Great post, gives me something to think about.
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Schleprock » Tue Jul 01, 2014 5:45 pm

VMI77 wrote:Is there any place you could have placed a camera that would have revealed the police vehicle? At a minimum you should have a camera showing who is at your front door, and ideally, covering all entrances. I have 360 degree camera coverage, and the first thing I do at an unexpected knock is check the cameras.



Again, great suggestion. Considering the times we have trolled around the security camera aisle in Costco, I will have to seriously consider doing so soon.
05/04/12 Plastic in hand (52 days MTM)

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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Schleprock » Tue Jul 01, 2014 5:58 pm

Charles L. Cotton wrote:Thanks for the post; it's a great reminder that complacency can be deadly.
Lest you think I'm jumping on you, here are my TWO stories.


Thanks for the glimpse into how even much more seasoned individuals can temporarily lapse into a state of "less than vigilant". It gives me hope that (hopefully) not all mistakes are unrecoverable and provides an opportunity to seek teachable moments for myself and my family from everyday occurrences.
05/04/12 Plastic in hand (52 days MTM)

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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Steamboat » Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:26 pm

Great post! I will be sharing this information with my wife.
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby Deltaboy » Sat Jul 12, 2014 1:44 pm

Thanks for story. We work hard for good security and this adds to our lesson book.
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Re: Knock at the door claiming to be the police

Postby goose » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:18 am

I am late to the game but this is a great share. Thank you!
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