Can I shoot a burglar who — once confronted — keeps coming at me inside my home?

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Q: Can a homeowner with a concealed pistol license shoot a burglar who — once confronted — keeps coming at the homeowner to try and hurt them instead of running away? — Sydney

A: “Well Sydney, the question you ask is about a concealed carry permit and using it in your own home and the short answer is ‘yes,’ but it’s way more complex than that. First of all, a person doesn’t have to have a concealed carry permit to have a firearm in their own home. In their own home they can have a firearm with or without a permit. But, when people say, ‘Well, can I use this if somebody breaks into my home or if somebody is threatening me in my home?’ the law gives a lot of leeway to people in their own homes, in their own residences. But, I would just say this: People will sometimes ask police officers and police chiefs, ‘Should I get a firearm for protection in my own home?’ and it’s a really complex issue. It’s an awesome right, but it’s an awesome responsibility to and you really need to make sure that you’re trained very, very well in how to use it, that you understand what the law is and really what it focuses on is what is reasonable. What is reasonable. That’s what a prosecutor would look at if something happened in a home with a firearm. So, don’t take it lightly. Give it a lot of thought and if you choose to have a firearm in your house make sure you’re trained and make sure you store it very, very well. But the short answer to the question is if it’s reasonable you can use deadly force inside your own home. But again, I would really pay attention to doing more research and getting more training.” — Bremerton Police Chief Steve Strachan