How to Safely Escape a Break-in – Part 1

Just recently, a family in the Lakeview neighborhood was targeted by a daring burglar who used a 30 lb. patio brick to break into their home as they slept. http://abc7chicago.com/news/burglar-uses-30-lb-patio-stone-to-break-into-lakeview-home/1298072/ (You can read the story here) The thief managed to escape quickly with credit cards and cash.

What happened to this brazen burglar? He was caught by security camera surveillance breaking into a house and searching through multiple floors while homeowners were inside. http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/burglar-caught-camera-homeowners-inside-24347038. Incidents like these are common and it’s vital to address them proactively.

You wake up to the sound of an intruder in your home. The alarm wasn’t triggered so you are unsure if you enable it.  Did the intruder enter through the main door where the motion detectors are installed or did they managed to disable it? The following tips will help you take action to control the situation.

  1. Don’t panic. Remember they decided to enter your personal space. You are familiar with your home and therefore in control.
  2. Remain quiet. Do not bring attention to yourself. Making noise will give away your location. Do not yell out “I have a gun or I called the police”
  3. Lock your room. Block your door with furniture.
  4. Press the panic button. The panic button works even when your alarm system is disarmed. All of our alarm clients have a stress code. This is a 3-digit number that is used to secretly convey the presence of an intruder. It is important that everyone in the house knows this code.
  5. Dial 911 and follow their instructions.
  6. Escape through a window. (Mainly if you find yourself on the first floor).
  7. Remote viewing. If you possess a camera system and can view the cameras remotely, log in and give a description of the subjects to the police.

If you are not able to leave the house, your first thought might be to confront the intruder. This is not the smartest move. The intruder didn’t hesitate breaking into you home when they knew there was a possibility of finding it occupied. If he injures you, who will protect your family?

In our blog “More Things that a Burglar Won’t Tell you part 2” (http://vintechnology.com/2011/07/14/more-things-a-burglar-wont-tell-you-part-2/) Question 21 gave us insight to the motivation behind burglaries.  When asked: What drove you or motivated you to commit burglary? “5 out of 8 former burglars admitted that they had an addiction”.  Also, while under the influence, people lose inhibitions and are more likely to react violently. If possible, find a place to hide and remain on the line with the operator until the police arrives.

Even though we highly discourage confrontation, in our next blog we will discuss what to do when confronting an intruder is inevitable.