A 12-year-old girl took matters into her own hands during a home invasion in southeast Oklahoma.
It happened on Wednesday when the girl was home alone. She told police a stranger rang the doorbell, then went around to the back door and kicked it in. She called her mom, Debra St. Clair, who told her to get the family gun, hide in a closet and call 911.
During that time, the intruder made his way through the house. St. Clair’s daughter told deputies the man came into the room where she was hiding and began to open up the closet door. That was when the 12 year old had to make a life-saving decision.
“And what we understand right now, he was turning the doorknob when she fired through the door,” said the Bryan County Undersheriff Ken Golden.
Good for her.
Good for Mom and her instructions.
This is a Right Thing to do. She didn’t confront, she hunkered down in as safe a place as she could to do her best to avoid the intruder. I personally might handle things differently, like using a command voice to tell them to get out. But for a 12-year-old, I consider what she did reasonable. And she got 911 on the phone and I’m sure kept the phone going… I’m guessing the gunshot is on the recording.
I wouldn’t recommend shooting through the door because you can’t be sure of your target. But I’ll give the girl the benefit of the doubt, because I don’t know all the details and obviously she hit the guy. You can hear her voice calm at first, but as he drew closer she was certainly scared to death. I can’t say I blame her at all for her actions.
It also brings up safe storage laws. The fact she was able to “get the family gun” means a readily dischargable gun was accessible to a minor. Granted, Oklahoma’s laws could be different in specifics, but I’m going to consider Texas’ law and the general notion of this legal concept. It may well be that this is a legal violation because the child was able to get the gun. But Thank God she was able to… because, as the print story doesn’t report but the video does, this same man was previously arrested for abducting a 17-year old girl. What if he found this girl and all she was doing was hiding in the closet with no means of defending herself? Would she still have been in the closet when Mom finally arrived home? Or would we have a tragic event on our hands?
We can also talk about general self-defense concepts. I mean, girl was on the phone with 911 and police were on their way… but they obviously didn’t get there in time. The police want to protect, they try to protect, but they cannot bend the laws of time and space and be everywhere and show up instantly on-demand. What can YOU do to keep yourself safe? What are you doing to take responsibility for yourself and the safety and well-being of your loved ones?
Teach your children. Teach them what to do in a case like this. Teach them how to use firearms in a safe and responsible manner. Help them understand. Help them care for themselves… because that’s what a parent does.