The summer is winding down but the heat isn’t. The summer of 2015 is shaping up to be a rather warm year and it’s always frustrating to see ignorant people leave their dogs or children inside the vehicle while they go inside to do shopping or errands.
And heck, we’ve already seen plenty of news stories just this past month of deputies and law enforcement having to break into a vehicle to save a toddler left in the sweltering heat.
So, when we received a message recently asking the following:
“If I see a toddler or dog trapped in a car and I can’t break open the window — is it alright to shoot out the windows?”
Hit the pause button.
Let’s flip the tables around. You sit inside a sweltering hot car. Your owner (or parent/guardian) has you stuck inside, sweating, miserable — not at all happy. Now this dude comes walking over to the window. You don’t know him. You’ve never seen him a day in your life.
After he beats on the window a few times, he draws his concealed carry pistol and aims it at the window. Which part of this equation do you think will work out for anyone’s advantage?
Spoiler alert: it won’t.
Is Breaking Into Someone’s Car Ever Justifiable?
Whether it’s a child, a dog, a cat, or a downright hostage in a kidnapping situation — your first job is to notify authorities immediately and without hesitation. That’s the only legal response you’re allowed to do. Breaking open the window with a rock can be considered damaging someone else’s property and that makes you liable for the damages. Granted, that may be a far removed thought in your mind in comparison to saving the life of a child or even a dog — but it is what it is.
We, at Concealed Nation, will never advocate for you to violate the law in any way. It’s our job to advocate and encourage discussion about legal concealed carry and 2nd Amendment rights. To that effect, we will never suggest that breaking a person’s car window to free their dog or child is a justifiable act. But sometimes, you do what you gotta do.
When the police arrive – and they will – they’ll make that decision because they’re authorized representatives of law enforcement. You, the concealed carrier, are not. You’re a private citizen doing what you feel is best within the confines of the law.
And for the love of everything – never, ever, ever draw your firearm for anything less than a life-threatening emergency and imminent threat to yourself, your family, or your property.
And lastly — THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A STUPID QUESTION.
One thing we always reinforce is if you have a question about something concerning concealed carrying, justifiable use of force, etc., we may not have the answer you’re looking for. Some questions firmly fall within the realm of “you need to speak with an attorney”. But we ALWAYS encourage you to ask whatever question is on your mind because it’s only when you ask a question that we can discuss it.
Every day we receive dozens of questions ranging from state and local law to questions of morality and ethics. We try to seriously consider each question and come up with the best possible answer we know how.
All concealed carriers are human beings and we all have the ability to make mistakes. Asking questions is a quick way to avoiding mistakes — so we’ll always encourage that practice.