inferno wrote:I guess it just depends on what you'd rather take your chances with. If somebody is in my house with a gun, I would rather take him down and take my chances with a judge and jury on any civil or criminal proceedings, than to take my chances on being able to say "Stop or I'll Shoot!!", re-evaluate, and then fire if necessary before the bad guy puts holes in me.
Drawing your firearm should be your last resort in any scenario. You don't do it to show off, or to intimidate someone, or even, I would argue, to cause them to stop and turn tail. If the situation is such that your only recourse is to draw your weapon and point it at someone--which in of itself is deadly force according to Utah Code--there should be nothing preventing you from pulling the trigger. If there is, then you probably didn't need to pull out your gun in the first place.
For example, if the intruder is such a low threat that you only need to keep him on the floor until the police arrive, why can't you gather your wife and kids in a back room, point your gun at the locked door, and call the police from there?
Furthermore, I believe its important to not only win the battle of the moment, but all future battles as well. Why would you take your chances with getting the guy on your living room floor, and having the police show up (and let's say for argument's sake you don't get gunned down by them for being the one holding the gun when they burst in like in the original post) and haul him away, only to have him paroled or let out on a technicality a few months later? He's going to have a score to settle and he's going to know you were the pansy that didn't pull the trigger. He'll be back with friends and this time probably won't give you the opportunity to politely say "Stop or I'll Shoot!!"
Am I really that far off base? I know this has gone a bit off topic now, but I really am interested in hearing your views on this. I decided before I purchased my first gun that I would only use it as an absolute last resort (even though Utah law doesn't have a requirement to retreat clause, I would do my best to leave the dangerous situation first), but that I would not hesitate to kill somebody if necessary. I'm having a hard time imagining a situation in which the presentation of my firearm would be necessary, but not its discharge. Give me an example of what you guys are thinking that would require such action.
Thanks for all of your thoughts and input. I'm really looking forward to learning from everybody's experience and wisdom.
I was taught you never pull your weapon unless you plan on using it.