Your sitting in your makeshift home-office reading the latest economic doom and gloom at SHTFplan.com, when you hear someone jimmying the front door.
- Grab the phone, lock yourself in the bathroom, and dial 911?
- Reach for the Beretta you have stashed in your office drawer and open fire?
- Reach for the Beretta, open fire, then call 911?
- Something else?
As reported in the WFTV9 video below, when a JP Morgan Chase contractor attempted to execute a foreclosure lockout on her home, Nancy Jackabeeny [sic] of Orange County chose #1. It turns out, however, that Nancy was not in foreclosure and the bank made a mistake.
Nancy is not alone – and such mistaken foreclosures and illegal entries into residences that are not in foreclosure and in many cases, are making timely payments, are becoming commonplace, as pointed out in New bank tactic – foreclose first, ask questions later:
…the most recent of these bizarre, mistaken-identity foreclosures comes out of Pittsburgh, The Wall Street Journal reports.
There 46-year-old diner owner Angela Iannelli returned home to find it padlocked.
Once she managed to get in, she found her furniture damaged, her belongings strewn about and her prized, 11-year-old parrot gone.
Iannelli, who had not missed any payments, then had to haggle with Bank of America employees to get her parrott back, she contends in a lawsuit.
As Attorneys General across the country (e.g. Ohio, Texas, Delaware) take action against mega-banks that may have or are currently foreclosing on tens of thousands of homeowners without the appropriate mortgage notes and legal proceedings, it is important to ask whether or not a homeowner is legally within their rights to shoot a perpetrator if they come barging through the door in the middle of the night to execute a foreclosure.
Karl Denninger of Market Ticker recommends that you buy a gun. He quotes Florida home protection statutes that clearly define when a homeowner can use deadly force to protect his or her home, namely in the event that the “person against whom the defensive force was used was in the process of unlawfully and forcefully entering, or had unlawfully and forcibly entered, a dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle.” According to Denninger:
That’s pretty clear.
So when Mr. Bank Thug unlawfully comes into your home, is not a law enforcement officer who has properly identified himself, and unlawfully breaks down the door, you are, from my reading of this statute, within your rights to shoot him to stop that unlawful entry, as you have the presumption under Florida Law that his intention is to commit an unlawful act involving force or violence.
I ain’t a lawyer but this statutory language does not leave much to interpretation.
Therefore, in Florida (and some other states) if Mr. RoboBank decides to come try to steal possession of your home without the nuisance of lawful process (and if you’re not actually in foreclosure he cannot acquire lawful process) it certainly appears that you have every right under the law to stop him, up to and including the use of deadly force.
Most states have similar homeowners protection laws and give you, the homeowner, the right to defend yourself if you feel threatened. (Make sure you understand the laws in your state before using a firearm)
There have been instances, similar to Ms. Iannelli’s from above, where bank employees and contractors have actually locked the home and taken all of the homeowners possessions, only to find out later that they foreclosed on the wrong home.
If you happen to be in your home at the time such an action ensues, and multiple individuals show up at your front and back doors, and you have no notice of an imminent foreclosure, what are you, as the homeowner, to think?
In the interest of safety for all involved, we recommend you announce your intentions prior to opening fire. Keep in mind that the people doing the work are usually contractors who assume that the bank did their due diligence and that they are acting within the confines of the law.