No Charges in Boulder "Make My Day" Shooting

The District Attorney of Boulder, CO says no charges will be filed against a couple who shot a 21 year old student who walked into their home and their bedroom at 3:30 a.m. a few days ago. The lights were out and the couple had been asleep when they heard an intruder. Colorado's Make My Day law justifies shooting an intruder in the home if the homeowner "reasonably believe[s] a trespassing person intends to use any measure of physical force on any occupant of the home."

Zoey Ripple, who graduated from the University of Colorado two weeks ago, was intoxicated and ignored the couple's warning to leave, even though they said they had a gun. She was shot in the hip and is recuperating in the hospital. [More...]

The DA today said Ms. Ripple will be charged with felony criminal trespass. The couple, who are both psychiatrists, were consulted on the charging decision.

When someone illegally enters your home, ignores your demand to leave and continues their approach, I think any reasonable person would believe they intended physical harm -- especially when it's dark and they can't see the intruder.

Ms. Ripple will likely end up with a plea that avoids a felony conviction and ensures she gets treatment. She's lucky she wasn't killed.

That being said, the couple, Timothy Justice and Doreen Orion, should start locking their screen door when they go to bed. It may be the People's Republic of Boulder, but this isn't the sixties and it's felony stupid to believe because you live in a progressive college town, no one would break into your house.

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    You would certainly think... (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Fri May 25, 2012 at 08:55:11 PM EST
    that two very well educated people would have the common sense to lock their door.  Especially when you live in a 2.75 million dollar house and have been the victim of a stalker.  

    I'm glad Stan seems to be leaning toward treatment as opposed to jail time for Ms. Ripple.    

    not my bag (5.00 / 3) (#5)
    by jharp on Fri May 25, 2012 at 09:08:17 PM EST
    I think this story is a good lesson that a dog is far superior home protection.

    I want no part of shooting a human being. Even seasoned professionals who kill people trying to kill them are badly traumatized. And that is just not for me.

    I'll still take my dog over any gun (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by Militarytracy on Fri May 25, 2012 at 10:06:12 PM EST
    I don't know how drunk you would have to be to be able to ignore my dog barking in your face :)  She may have had a bite if she was really that comatosely insistent and continuing to come in, but on my karma scale a bite beats a gunshot.

    I'm with you (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by jharp on Fri May 25, 2012 at 10:37:24 PM EST
    I am with you buddy. And the hound will also wake you to up to let you know something is amiss.

    I don't know of any gun that can match that.

    And the hound is very unlikely to accidentally kill a family member, unlike a gun.


    At 5mos old, my Dal showed me her (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by nycstray on Sat May 26, 2012 at 01:42:40 AM EST
    big girl bark. I'm very happy with it :D It means someone is on the property/approaching the house vs her other random barking. At 10mos, she still sleeps like the dead, so not 100% sure she  would alert me at night, but I'll still take my chances with her. It's no secret I have a loud dog here, lol!~ (we're still working on that excess barking thing!) My neighbors swear they don't hear here when they're indoors and they like the fact she barks at approaching people because our houses are so close.

    My last Dal did alert me one night when my door popped open (lock must not have latched in?) I woke up to this very primal growling. I found her sitting a foot or so from the opening of the door. Nobody was crossing her path!


    The dog may be asleep... (none / 0) (#88)
    by unitron on Thu May 31, 2012 at 04:30:43 AM EST
    ...but that doesn't mean that her nose is.

    We have two dachshunds - talk about an (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by Angel on Sat May 26, 2012 at 08:28:41 AM EST
    alarm system!

    Unfortunate (5.00 / 5) (#18)
    by Lora on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:53:47 AM EST
    I can't really argue their choice, but I wonder if there was another less violent way out of the situation.

    As in: how about turning on a light?  Cell phones will shed a good deal of light; was one by the bed?

    If it was too dark to see the intruder, how come they were able to shoot so accurately?

    If there was no response to their warning, there was also presumably no active attempt at harming the couple.  Couldn't they have held off for just a moment to assess the situation?

    I was once awakened from a sound sleep by someone crashing through my apartment.  I called out, "Who's there?"  I heard, "Shhh, shhh."  More crashes.  I was afraid.  I was in my bedroom and the crashes were right outside.  I called out again, "Who is it?  What's going on?"  I heard, "It's just me.  It's all right."  I then realized that the blind girl who lived next door must have gotten into the wrong apartment.  I called out to tell her, and she fled, mortified.  Her date had returned her to the wrong door.

    I'm glad I tried to sort things out.

    Turning on a light (none / 0) (#32)
    by jbindc on Sat May 26, 2012 at 04:46:44 PM EST
    A first reaction probably, but then again, if someone is there to do you harm, doesn't that just give the intruder more reason to do jarem - so you can't identify them?

    It just seems (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by Lora on Sat May 26, 2012 at 07:49:47 PM EST
    there wasn't a clear intention of anything.  I don't blame them for shooting; I might have done the same if I had a gun by my bed.  I just think that there wasn't any obvious threat other than there is a strange person in the bedroom.  Disconcerting, possibly dangerous, but if the intruder had meant to do harm, don't you think there would have been some definite action on the intruder's part?  I just wish there could have been more of a pause before the shot -- IOW, this strange person doesn't appear to want anything or be doing anything; maybe this is all a big mistake.

    But to answer your question, yeah, you might be right: if a crime was being committed, the less you saw, the greater your chances of survival?  But it was just an odd occurence that ended sadly and perhaps it was unnecessary.


    shoot so accurately? (none / 0) (#89)
    by unitron on Thu May 31, 2012 at 04:43:19 AM EST
    It was only accurate if the shooter intended to hit them in the hip.

    The young lady is most fortunate to be alive.

    In a situation like that, turning on a light that lets the intruder more clearly see you isn't necessarily a good idea if you don't know who the intruder is or what their intentions are.

    No response might mean someone who means you harm is remaining silent to deny you information, like where to aim.

    In the case of the blind girl, as soon as you realized it was her you should have told her to stand absolutely still until you could come out there, turn on the lights, and make sure there was nothing for her to injure herself on when trying to leave.


    Reaching for the gun is so easy (5.00 / 4) (#19)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 10:10:23 AM EST
    Why would 2 adults even try to control a drunk 21 year old woman without it?

    I always ask myself what would have happened if there was no gun available. Somehow in this case I believe they would have gotten her safely out of their house, or at least subdued until the police came.

    But really, why bother trying?

    A different name (5.00 / 2) (#20)
    by Lora on Sat May 26, 2012 at 10:18:19 AM EST
    A law named "Make my day" does not encourage a reasoned, non-violent approach.  How about, "Protection from Bodily Harm?"  Not catchy, but in the interest of saving lives and avoiding debilitating and possibly deadly mistakes, we don't need a Dirty Harry catchphrase to justify the shooting of guns at people.

    When people ask me (5.00 / 3) (#25)
    by scribe on Sat May 26, 2012 at 02:19:52 PM EST
    "What kind of gun should I get for home protection?" my standard answer is "a loud dog".  This, for several reasons:
    1.  the dog knows who belongs and who doesn't.  Sleepy you can and will get confused.
    2.  the dog never really sleeps while you're sleeping.  Rather, it's more of the sleeping with one eye open variety.
    3.  the dog is more aware of what's going on than you will ever be.*
    4.  You don't want the karma of shooting someone, let alone the possibility of a conviction for it, on your head.
    5.  You're too civilized to shoot someone and will likely hesitate in the hope of not having to shoot even when the situation demands you do.  It's those moments which wind up with the criminal intruder getting the better of you and maybe getting the gun from you and turning it on you.  He's already dropped any pretense of civilization whenhe decided to break in - "in for a penny, in for a pound" is where he is.
    6.  If you're anywhere near average (and, on the bell curve that makes up our society, you are), you will not devote enough time, effort and money to actually going out and practicing with the gun to make it useful.  On top of which if you really need it, you're likely to be sleepy and confused and in the dark.  You'll fumble loading it, or condfuse the safety and the slide release or magazine release or pull a trigger on an empty hamber or any number of other errors related to the combined effects of sleep, confusion, and being unfamiliar with the gun.  
    7. Even if you do put in the time, effort and money, you're likely to keep the gun stowed away where the kids can't get it (or the repairman can't see it) such that you'd wind up having to either dig it out of the bottom of a closet or run through the intruder to get it from the other end of the house.  It's useless to you there.

    All that said, if you still want to get a gun for home protection, IMHO the best combination of safety, utility and effectiveness is a 20 gauge pump action shotgun with a short "deer" barrel.  A Mossberg 500 or a Remington 870 are probably the best.  They are relatively safe, handle well, don't jam, will require your deliberate action to reload and work.  And everyone recognizes the sound of cycling a pumpgun to load it.  Most importantly, they are popular so there is a secondary market and you won't get too badly hurt when you decide to get rid of it and go to sell it.

    * my dog, a setter, has a particular thing - animus - for cats.  She points them, chases them and might eat them if I let her free to get them.  She can be in the rear of the apartment, far from the front windows, and all the windows and doors closed tight (for winter), and suddenly come running into the front room to look out the window and bark at the cat on the other side of the street.  How she knew a cat was across the street (sneaking onto someone's porch) through sealed-shut windows and from the far side of the apartment with no sightlines is something which will beforever beyond me.  But she knows.  She's far more aware of the situation than I ever will be.

    I'm beginning to feel like I am a real risk taker (5.00 / 3) (#37)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:10:15 PM EST
    Here I am, sleeping every night without a gun handy.  Apparently more people than I would have thought possible think I am risking my life and limb. But I like my odds.

    Josh's Standard Poodle is surprisingly (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by Militarytracy on Sat May 26, 2012 at 11:14:47 PM EST
    a big home protector, not in that I think she has serious bite pressure but wow what a bark and presence.  It is worse than our German Shepherds.  The German Shepherds have that confident low throaty bark, and hers is large, loud, and sounds like she is just about to freak out on you.  Whenever Josh's nieces are here she is always with them too, she sleeps closest to the smallest most vulnerable person in the house at night.

    Not comparable bite pressure though, she was trying to play with a very large stick that the shepherds carry around in the front yard this afternoon.  She was having hell managing it gracefully but she still got it done and she was so proud.


    Oreo (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Lora on Sun May 27, 2012 at 12:04:58 PM EST
    I have a neutered male cat who has cornered several of my daughter's male friends over the years.  We're talking 20-25 pounds of serious yowling and hissing.  The boys wouldn't budge until I rescued them.  A burglar would be different, I suppose, unless Oreo thought he had a romantic interest in my daughter ;-)

    I had a cat (none / 0) (#76)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:27:01 AM EST
    that cornered my landlady in the bathroom when she came to do a repair.  I was told that she was standing up on two legs, yowling and hissing.  I don't recall now how LL got away.  Her mother was part Maine Coon and she was big girl herself.  She was the only one of her litter to live.  Mama had ten kittens, all undernourished prenatally, right after I adopted her, and Omega almost didn't make it either. If it weren't for her bada$$ attitude she probably wouldn't have.  Boy that was a rough week.  I was working full time, taking midterms and my kittens were dying so I was trekking back and forth to the vet.

    She was raised in an apartment, but shortly after the landlady incident went to live in my folks' "farm".  She took to that life in a way that she never took to apartment living.  She was a beautiful gray.  She would fetch a ball of wadded up aluminum foil for a surprisingly long time.  

    Omega was a Queen among queen cats.


    Our first standard poodle, (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by Zorba on Sun May 27, 2012 at 03:16:32 PM EST
    who was a really large (75 pounds, but not at all fat) spayed female, was so protective, I always felt perfectly safe up here with her.  One time, our windows were open (they're screened) and some hikers came by, as they often do up this way.  I hadn't heard them until they were quite nearby and the sudden proximity of their voices startled me and I gasped.  I literally thought that our poodle was going to go right through the screen after them.  Obviously, she had picked up on my concern.  She may not have had the bite pressure of German Shepherds or other breeds, but I always felt that she would have given her all and "gone down fighting," if it came to that, to protect us.
    Plus, she was really smart and well-trained.  I could take her out, unleashed, and even if hikers, bicyclists, or people walking their dogs went by and she started to bark, all I had to say was "Quiet!  Sit!"  And she would do so.

    Interesting about the bite pressure (none / 0) (#52)
    by nycstray on Sun May 27, 2012 at 12:15:21 AM EST
    both of my Dals have/had some serious jaw action. Roxy! bruised the crap outta me when I first got her @ 5mos 28lbs. My legs and arms were a mess :P Thankfully, she now controls her mouth and does a real nice "gentle".

    Delilah's bite would still make you sorry (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 12:24:17 AM EST
    But our Shepherd Auburn though and Major too, I don't know what it is and perhaps some of it is just sheer bone and muscle muzzle density, but her mouth is like a blunt force object.  I've accidentally hit my hand against her open mouth before and hit a few teeth in the process and My God it hurt.  She barely seemed to notice I was without grace for a moment and falling into her, but her mouth has its own force field or something.

    Our neighbors across the road have a poodle and (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by Angel on Sun May 27, 2012 at 08:33:01 AM EST
    that dog has an incredibly loud bark.  So loud that it scares my dachshunds back inside the house when they hear it!  Yes, my weiners might be weenies!!  

    Count me as surprised by that poodle bark (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 11:59:13 AM EST
    She chases squirrels too but not seriously, only for fun.  There are some birds usually on the ground between our house and the neighbors house.  I'm not sure what they are, they look a little bit like small quail when they take off.  But I can now see the poodle's hunting history showing because the first thing she does when she hits the front yard is go flush all of them out.  Then she turns to make sure we saw and she looks very proud of herself.

    We always tried to (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by Zorba on Sun May 27, 2012 at 03:22:06 PM EST
    discourage squirrels from getting to our chestnuts and black walnuts before we could harvest them, and discourage deer from eating our fruit (peaches and apples in particular) before they were quite ripe enough for us to pick.  All I had to do, with the standard poodles we have owned up here, was say "Get the squirrel!" or "Get the deer!" and open the back door- they took off and chased the intruders away!

    They are much different dogs than I expected (5.00 / 2) (#72)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 03:49:48 PM EST
    I'm still pretty enchanted, very smart, very family, very athletic.  She may have been having a hard time balancing that half log in her mouth, but she was jumping four feet off the ground with it and running like a greyhound.

    I agree (5.00 / 2) (#73)
    by Zorba on Sun May 27, 2012 at 04:01:21 PM EST
    They are, indeed, "very smart, very family, very athletic."  They really, really are very smart dogs (despite their "frou-frou" reputations with some people), and they have always done well in Obedience Trials.  Sometimes they are almost too smart for their own good.   ;-)
    We cannot own any other dogs- Mr. Zorba is allergic to most dogs, but not to Poodles.  That's what he grew up with (Standards), and that's what we have always owned.  It's possible that he might be fine with Portuguese Water Dogs or Irish Water Spaniels (both related to Poodles), but we're not sure, and we've never tested that.

    It might/must be anatomy (none / 0) (#54)
    by nycstray on Sun May 27, 2012 at 01:18:39 AM EST
    Dals have a more square bulky jaw than a Standard, and I'm thinking the GSD, while not bulky in jaw compared to some dogs, is still wider at the back of the jaw/head.

    Dogs of a smaller size still hurt like Heck when they bite, so I imagine Delilah would have decent bite. I had a sturdy chi mix bite my foot through a soft shoe at the shelter once, d@mn! that hurt!!!  It was just interesting seeing you type about bite pressure when I would give a dog of her size a decent bite rating without her even touching me :) And knowing a Dal's bite pressure . . . we won't discuss that a young, excited Dal could prob knock you out with her head . . . or knock your teeth out, lol!~


    They say Dobermans (none / 0) (#66)
    by fishcamp on Sun May 27, 2012 at 12:16:16 PM EST
    have over 200 lbs. of  biting pressure in their jaws.  That's unsourced but my grandmother told me that when I was a kid so it must be true.  I know it takes a giant fish to break 200 lb. fishing line.

    I'm with your grandmother on this one. (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by NYShooter on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:45:17 PM EST
     My history (50+yrs) with dogs has been primarily large ones: Setters, Collies, Sheppards,  Danes, and the last few years, Dobies. I loved them all madly, truly I did. But, I have to tell you, my Dobies are in a class by themselves. I don't quite know how to explain it. While all those other breeds are different in some ways, they're more similar than different. The exception are the Dobermans. There's so much unique with them that I can't go into that here and now. But, if anyone out there has experience with dobies, I'd love a conversation. My current one is, "Storm," and my wife has her sister, "Sasha."

    But the question was grandma's comment about "jaw strength." I've told you about the different breeds I've had; only one could chew a Pipe wrench into dust.....my 90 lb. "Storm."


    Weren't poodles (none / 0) (#75)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:14:54 AM EST
    bred to be bird dogs?  My son's Chocolate Lab had the softest mouth I've ever encountered.  I thought that had to do with game retrieval and not damaging the game.

    She would run you down to get the ball, though.  A born athlete, she was.


    Dot.tee, my previous Dal was like your (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by nycstray on Sun May 27, 2012 at 12:08:40 AM EST
    Setter in being able to sense a cat across the street. I my case, it was 4 floors up and she could be lounging on the couch and know that d@mn feral cat was cruising into the school yard. Took me forever to figure out what she was always alerting to out the window. At first I thought it was people or people walking a dog etc. Nope, it was this slinky kitty.

    If I was concerned enough for (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by Anne on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:10:18 PM EST
    my safety to keep a gun handy by the bed, I think I'd probably also lock my doors; the last thing I think I'd really want to do is shoot at someone in a rush of adrenaline in the dark.

    With locked doors, this young woman would not have stumbled into the wrong house.

    There you go thinking again Annne (5.00 / 2) (#39)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:16:21 PM EST
    Just going to get you into trouble.

    I wonder if having the gun gives them a sense that they don't need to take normal precautions? I was gong to call it a false sense of security, but it is plainly not false if you are legally allowed to shoot anyone that enters your door by mistake,


    Hmmmm (none / 0) (#55)
    by jbindc on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:51:04 AM EST
    Have you ever forgotten to lock your doors?  

    Hmmmmm...why do you (4.00 / 3) (#60)
    by Anne on Sun May 27, 2012 at 09:36:25 AM EST
    do that?  Why must you take that tone, like you think you're about to "get" someone?  If I had been speaking specifically about the incident in question, I would apologize for not wondering that maybe that was the one night these people forgot to lock up.  But I wasn't speaking specifically, I was speaking in a much broader sense - was that really not obvious?

    The truth is that up until just over a year ago, we never locked our doors, or our cars - we live in the country, and our property - about 5 acres - is fully fenced.

    But a year ago in March, we had a little crime spree in the area; people like us, who also never locked anything up because we felt we were safe, had our cars broken into.  My purse was taken off the front seat of my car, which was in the (open) garage, and another neighbor experienced the same thing.

    My purse - and checkbooks, and other assorted contents, minus my phone - were found a couple miles away by a Verizon worker who spotted it on the side of the road.  My wallet - minus the cash and my license and Visa card - was found in the other direction, all over the lawn of a woman who also discovered that her car had been broken into.

    So, no, I no longer "forget" to lock our doors, or our cars, because I learned my lesson - we all did.

    I'm sure you will feel some sense of triumph in all of this; I hope it's as enjoyable as you had hoped it would be.


    Wow are you on the warpath (2.00 / 1) (#69)
    by jbindc on Sun May 27, 2012 at 02:18:17 PM EST
    And ready to jump at anything I say - even when your assumptions are wrong again.

    No ,I feel no sense of "triumph" - whatever that's supposed to mean. You seemed very judgmental about this couple, while having little judgnent about a very drunk girl who made mistake by going in rhe wrong house and then compounded it by not responding when spoken to.

    Of course, had she not had much alcohol to blow a .2, then this crisis also could have been avoided.


    I think those who jump should not (5.00 / 2) (#84)
    by Anne on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:44:21 AM EST
    be shocked or offended if the person they jumped on responds accordingly; perhaps you should think about looking before you leap?

    You know what I really hate about guns?  The ongoing and sometimes extraordinary effort that goes into finding ways to justify shooting people, while at the same time finding ways to eliminate any responsibility on the part of the shooters to avoid doing so.

    And I hate the fact that no gun has ever made anyone smarter.

    If you want to talk about judgment, then why not address the quality of the judgment of people who sleep next to a gun that they are obviously willing and able to shoot someone with, but who don't lock their home against intruders of any kind - drubk college girls or otherwise.  Since when is it smart to substitute a gun for a locked door?  And the legal response of "the law doesn't require them to have locked their doors or taken any other, less potentially lethal, efforts" is not, in my opinion, a safe harbor if what you're really interested in is discussing judgment.

    Of course the college girl is also responsible for her own behavior and actions - I never said she wasn't, but I guess in your mind, if I wasn't reveling in her "getting what she deserved" - the primary and driving concept behind so much of your commentary on legal matters - then I must have been condoning her irresponsible behavior.


    Said very drunk girl would not (none / 0) (#79)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:42:12 AM EST
    have been in the house had the door been locked.  Might have thrown up on their lawn, though.  

    But of the two behaviors, shooting an intruder and trespassing, which one had the longer term consequence?

    And apparently it is trespassing in Colorado, not burglary.  


    Trespassing (none / 0) (#80)
    by Cylinder on Mon May 28, 2012 at 03:03:04 AM EST
    But of the two behaviors, shooting an intruder and trespassing, which one had the longer term consequence?

    Trespassing. It caused her to be shot.

    A person cannot be reasonably share any responsibility - moral or legal - for not having their home wildly drunk coed-proffed at all times. The mere fact that their door is unlock should in no way impact their expectation to be free from intrusion or the reasonable presumption of an intruder in your bedroom at 3AM presents a threat.

    If she napped on the interstate, would the driver share responsibility for not driving in the slow lane?


    Let me get this straight (5.00 / 1) (#81)
    by NYShooter on Mon May 28, 2012 at 04:38:42 AM EST
    If your mother or father, son or daughter, for whatever reason: reaction to medication, heat stroke, food poisoning, become disoriented and inadvertently wander into someone's house or apartment; lighting is good and they make no threatening moves; and, furthermore, when questioned by the homeowner they are unresponsive, then shooting them between the eyes is o.k. by you.

    Please don't say my example is farfetched because it's just exactly those misconceptions that lead to unnecessary deaths.


    Third party not subject to sentiment (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by Cylinder on Mon May 28, 2012 at 05:03:37 AM EST
    If your mother or father, son or daughter...

    A third party is not subject - or responsible for - to my sentiment.

    That is, the mere fact that I love my daughter above all other things does not exact some special burden on a person's prespumtion to the right of sanctuary within there home. By the same token, a father of a common crackhead who has resorted to home invasions to support their denpendance wound not neccessarily love their daughter any less than I do my own.

    How I feel about this nightmare scenario has nothing whatsoever to do with the moral or legal responsibility on the part of the actor.


    I didn't write it that way (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by NYShooter on Mon May 28, 2012 at 06:30:35 AM EST
    to be a "trick" question. I wrote it that way to emphasize that laws are ostensibly written by our representatives for our benefit. The law we're talking about wasn't mandated by Martians and imposed upon us. Go to the genesis of almost any law and you'll find lobbyists bribing politicians for the enrichment of  special interests. You and I weren't there as the envelopes were being passed around.

    The point is, we can make our homes safer and put in safeguards so that unintended consequences don't happen. Of course, that may take a little more time and a little more effort. Unfortunately, as we've seen with the SYG threads, careful deliberation and due diligence is shouted down by emotionally and cognitively challenged misfits.

    In almost all disputes both side want the same thing, a fair outcome for all involved. But, bumper stickers are never a good substitute for honest debate.

    In Sanford, Everyone wants GZ punished if the trial is fair and honest, and  after he is found guilty by a jury of his peers. And, conversely, everyone wants him to be released a free man if he's found not guilty.

    And, that shouldn't be a very hard concept to agree on.


    Boy, you will (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by sj on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:02:25 AM EST
    twist your mind into a pretzel to justify that gun.

    For the love of God....if someone (1.17 / 6) (#63)
    by Rojas on Sun May 27, 2012 at 11:41:10 AM EST
    doesn't want people showing up univited in the middle of the night, he or she should lock the damn doors.

    It's not exactly something that requires an advanced degree, just plain common sense....

    I'm sure you paid Visa in full for any unauthorized charges.


    Sorry to have to ruin your (none / 0) (#67)
    by Anne on Sun May 27, 2012 at 01:04:35 PM EST
    sarcastic little dig, but while there was one attempted charge, I had already notified the bank, so there were no unauthorized charges.

    And what part of "learned my lesson" did you not understand? After 28 years of never having a problem, we were blissfully in denial about our safety, and glad to learn only through the loss of minimal property and inconvenience that our quiet little country life needed to include locked doors and cars.  Up to that point, with a fully fenced property and several dogs, we had never been worried about anyone showing up in our house in the middle of the night, and we weren't sleeping with guns locked and loaded an arm's reach away.

    If I was going to keep a gun handy, I'd make doubly sure the house was locked up, because I'd never want to have to use it.


    No dig (1.00 / 7) (#68)
    by Rojas on Sun May 27, 2012 at 01:24:29 PM EST
    Objective fact.
    You're a hypocrite.

    hypocrite? Not so much (5.00 / 0) (#77)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:29:09 AM EST
    Speaking from experience, I'd say.

    Sounds fair (none / 0) (#1)
    by Slayersrezo on Fri May 25, 2012 at 07:44:35 PM EST
    No one was killed.

    Not really. (none / 0) (#2)
    by redwolf on Fri May 25, 2012 at 08:19:25 PM EST
    The girl got her lesson with the gun shot wound.  No reason to press charges over a drunk college kid being stupid.

    Being drunk and stupid is understandable (none / 0) (#3)
    by Angel on Fri May 25, 2012 at 08:49:31 PM EST
    at that age.  Entering someone's home and not leaving when told to do so is more than stupid, it's criminal.  She needs to face the consequences of her actions.  

    If it was the start of the school year (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Militarytracy on Sat May 26, 2012 at 03:00:52 PM EST
    I would have to wonder if she wasn't suffering a bit from the higher altitude.  It happens at University of Wyoming all the time when people from lower elevations first get to college there.  In the first month you bump into several newbies to mile high that are obliterated with a very small amount of alcohol applied.  Very often getting naked all by themselves is involved too, never understood why.  Very funny, always good for a joke, but gunshots not necessary.  Four years of being forever embarrassed seems punishment enough for me.

    but certainly no way to go through life. (none / 0) (#12)
    by cpinva on Sat May 26, 2012 at 08:10:27 AM EST
    Being drunk and stupid is understandable

    so, the couple violated every gun safety rule, along with common sense. yep, definitely the type of folks i want to have weapons. let me guess, they leave the doors of their cars unlocked as well, and are shocked, shocked mind you! when one gets stolen?


    What... (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by TerryMann on Sat May 26, 2012 at 10:39:23 AM EST
    gun safety rule do you think the couple violated?

    I said, "...at that age." (none / 0) (#15)
    by Angel on Sat May 26, 2012 at 08:26:33 AM EST
    But otherwise agree with your comment.

    two psychiatrists, wow. (none / 0) (#6)
    by NYShooter on Fri May 25, 2012 at 09:32:30 PM EST

    I wonder if they said, "Zoh, tell us, Zoey, how did it make you feeel?"

    Anyway, things just aren't always simple, black or white, etc. Everything is relative. However, when your Home is invaded that puts the intrusion into the top category of no, no's. And, a homeowner should be given the widest possible latitude in protecting it, and it's inhabitants.

    As far as punishment for Zoey? Of course there's the punishment prescribed in the law. Personally, I would have hoped Zoey would show some kind of genuine remorse.  She could have, for example, offered to work as a candy striper at the local hospital for a period determined by the good doctors; there's no shortage of volunteerism to choose from.

    And, finally, not so sure if its name, nickname, "make my day," is necessary.

    if everything is relative, then, (none / 0) (#13)
    by cpinva on Sat May 26, 2012 at 08:15:25 AM EST
    as my old managerial econ prof. used to say, nothing is relative.

    Everything is relative.

    oh, c'mon now, we the public love cute names, for laws that would be considered loathsome if given a not-so-cute nick name. of course, the character who makes the comment isn't exactly the kind of cop you want hanging around the neighborhood, given his proclivity for shooting first, and not bothering to ask questions at all. he would quickly become a huge financial burden to the locality.


    your comments (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Jeralyn on Sat May 26, 2012 at 10:47:11 AM EST
    are bizarre. They didn't violate any gun safety rules and they not only told the intruder they couldn't see to leave, but said they had a gun. Stop making things up.

    It's actually as simple as... (none / 0) (#9)
    by Sentenza on Sat May 26, 2012 at 12:48:51 AM EST
    ...don't go into a house that isn't yours uninvited.

    It shouldn't have to be "criminally stupid" to not lock your door. This burglar is a victim of her own stupidity.

    Ms. Ripple should grow up and learn to act like a responsible adult and imbibe in adult vices responsibly.

    so now y'all have turned into a burglar? (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by Dr Molly on Sat May 26, 2012 at 05:38:52 PM EST
    I think I would call her (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by itscookin on Sat May 26, 2012 at 06:14:18 PM EST
    a "trespasser", but my only legal training comes from watching TV. I think to be a "burglar" you have to plan to commit a crime after you break and enter?

    It depends on the state... (none / 0) (#59)
    by Sentenza on Sun May 27, 2012 at 09:24:32 AM EST
    ...in Washington, if you unlawfully enter a building, there is a legal presumption you're intent on a crime therein.

    It didn't happen in Washington (5.00 / 0) (#78)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:37:44 AM EST
    I am amazed at how adept you are (none / 0) (#40)
    by lousy1 on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:23:13 PM EST
    at ridiculing others peoples terror.

    If it is that simple I'm surprised it (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:39:57 PM EST
    took until 1985 for Colorado to encode it into law. I'm surprised that these laws, which are actually fairly recent 'innovations'  are now seen by so many as clear common sense, even on a leftie blog. Shows me that the right has done a heckuva job scaring us with the spectre of criminals around every corner.

    Bingo (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by Dr Molly on Sun May 27, 2012 at 09:18:03 AM EST
    Shows me that the right has done a heckuva job scaring us with the spectre of criminals around every corner.

    Castle Doctrine/SYG not new (none / 0) (#45)
    by Cylinder on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:53:14 PM EST
    I'm surprised that these laws, which are actually fairly recent 'innovations'  are now seen by so many as clear common sense, even on a leftie blog.

    As illustrated in Brown v US and its cites, SYG is no recent legal innovation. You can argue that they're not good policy, but you can't argue they're new.


    1985 seems recent to me. That is when (5.00 / 2) (#47)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 10:01:56 PM EST
    Colorado enacted the law protecting people from prosecution and lawsuits in these cases. It smacks of Reagan era NRA politics to me.

    And double bingo! (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by Dr Molly on Sun May 27, 2012 at 09:18:32 AM EST
    It smacks of Reagan era NRA politics to me.

    Some of us remember vigorously (5.00 / 2) (#61)
    by ruffian on Sun May 27, 2012 at 10:09:09 AM EST
    opposing the enactment of such laws at the time, when it was more obvious what was going on. Now it seems that this, as on many other issues, the Reagan era right wing position has become 'centrist'.

    I don't think anyone in my neighborhood locks (none / 0) (#30)
    by itscookin on Sat May 26, 2012 at 04:38:58 PM EST
    doors. There hasn't been a break-in in the 30 years I've lived here. Most of us do have dogs, but I don't think protection is the reason why we have them.  I think the "lock yourself inside, or fear for your life" has a lot to do with where you live.

    don't break in to houses (none / 0) (#11)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat May 26, 2012 at 03:34:34 AM EST
    of you don't want to get shot.  No one is obligated to first figure out if you are dangerous, or not, before they protect themselves.

    Um, she did not "break into their house" (5.00 / 7) (#17)
    by Dr Molly on Sat May 26, 2012 at 08:31:22 AM EST
    She drunkenly wandered into the wrong house apparently.

    I wonder if you'd make the same comment, if this had been an elderly person with Alzheimer's or a young confused or lost child.

    It's all OK, we just live in the Wild West now and everyone should be armed and shoot first, ask later?

    This country gets more and more bizarro


    Not only this coutry (none / 0) (#24)
    by Wile ECoyote on Sat May 26, 2012 at 01:33:55 PM EST
    Indian women turn to firearms against threat of violence

    Guns are increasingly popular with well-off Indian women who feel that they should be able to defend themselves against crime

    Imagine that, wanting to be able to choose to defend themselves. What next?


    Defend themselves against what? (5.00 / 2) (#28)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 03:50:07 PM EST
    In this Boulder case, the people's safety was not actually threatened, Had it actually been a dangerous armed intruder, I wonder if their gun would have protected them at all.

    For some definitions of threatened (none / 0) (#29)
    by Cylinder on Sat May 26, 2012 at 04:10:10 PM EST
    I would guess that most people agree and (IMO) Colorado law certainly agrees that the act of unauthorized entry into an occupied residence is percieved as threatening to its occupants.

    Cylinder, (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by NYShooter on Thu May 31, 2012 at 12:04:30 AM EST
     What I would like to get across to you is that we agree on (almost) everything. Of course one should expect to be safe in one's home; of course the trespasser, or violator was wrong doing what she did; of course, violating laws carry consequences and if found guilty of some crime she should pay the price; Of course, of course, of course. So, let's tug at your heartstrings one more time: you told your little, adorable daughter not to eat another cookie before dinner. Well, the little felon flips you a psychic bird, and munches away.

    Do you take a 2 x 4 to her wrist? In other words, if a psycho breaks into your house with the intent to hurt, kill, or rape you, well, I'd cut out their eyeballs with a spoon, and not think anything of it. But a Coed, doing their common binge drinking, maybe deserves a night in the county lock-up to sleep it off, and maybe some community time. Just because you might have the law, written by the NRA, on your side, I'm sorry, I find the smug, swaggering, self satisfaction of "blowing someone away" for what otherwise would be a laughable memory, to be deranged, dangerous, and antithetical to everything I believe in.


    Self defense is not punishment (none / 0) (#87)
    by Cylinder on Thu May 31, 2012 at 04:21:24 AM EST
    But a Coed, doing their common binge drinking, maybe deserves a night in the county lock-up to sleep it off, and maybe some community time.

    Justification is not punishment for some perceived wrongdoing. It is a legal acknowledgment that, under some vey specific instances, that acts that would be illegal in another context should not (or cannot, IMO) be punished. For instance, when you wake up at 3AM and an unknown person is in the room. The law recognizes that a reasonably cautious and prudent person may act instead of conducting some kind of bizzare interview to determine the motive of the intruder.

    I'm sorry, I find the smug, swaggering, self satisfaction of "blowing someone away" for what otherwise would be a laughable memory, to be deranged, dangerous, and antithetical to everything I believe in.

    Me too. Is there evidence that the homeowners took such satisfaction?

    There could be some satisfaction to be found in the knowledge that one was up to the task of acting in the face of great fear, though I doubt hindsight would allow it for them in this specific instance.

    What if the intruder had been some sexual sadist? Would the male spouse be allowed a little satisfaction for acting at that point? How do you make that disctiction, waken from dead sleep at 3AM in your own home?


    How would you know that (none / 0) (#31)
    by jbindc on Sat May 26, 2012 at 04:44:18 PM EST
    Being awakened at 3am, and having no response from the intruder?



    The same hindsight they would have had (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 08:58:49 PM EST
    if they hadn't shot before they knew what was happening. Scary and startling, yes. A threat to their safety, no.

    Not neccessarily (none / 0) (#41)
    by Cylinder on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:34:29 PM EST
    The same hindsight they would have if they hadn't shot before they knew what was happening. Scary and startling, yes. A threat to their safety, no.

    Your point assumes all people who show up uninvited at your bedroom at 3AM are harmless. It would just as easily been the other type of hindsight - your last struggling bit of life spent watching your wife being violently assaulted.

    Hindsight shows she probably wasn't a danger - though someone so out of control that they eneter the wrong house and do not respond to commands to leave cannot be assumed to be of no grave threat.

    I mean, they gave the woman fair warning. What else could be asked?


    What would they have done if they had no gun? (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:50:15 PM EST
    Probably grabbed a phone, called 911, and locked themselves in the bathroom.  If they had been a little bolder, maybe turned on the light and assessed the situation clearly. I think the convenience of the gun cuts off a whole range of other responses.

    'just as easily'? In fact, no. (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:54:04 PM EST
    Even armed robberies rarely end up as you describe.

    Of course I have no argument with someone shooting an armed robber- I am just saying our sense of the liklihood of threat has been greatly manipulated and exaggerated.


    Also, a wife is a lot more likely to get shot by (5.00 / 2) (#48)
    by ruffian on Sat May 26, 2012 at 10:13:56 PM EST
    her Glock-toting husband than she is by a burglar. That's just statistics. I like my chances a lot better in a gun free home.

    Ok, I'm done now! This has really been bugging me all day.


    For the love of God...if someone (5.00 / 4) (#49)
    by Anne on Sat May 26, 2012 at 10:21:46 PM EST
    doesn't want people showing up univited in the middle of the night, he or she should lock the damn doors.

    It's not exactly something that requires an advanced degree, just plain common sense; the fact that these people apparently didn't have any kind of proves the point that guns just don't make people smarter.

    And, yes, I know locks won't keep out everyone, but most crimes are ones of opportunity, and a locked house doesn't present one.


    Yes, let's compare ourselves to India (none / 0) (#26)
    by Dr Molly on Sat May 26, 2012 at 02:29:56 PM EST
    for the best arguments on violence and examples of how to deal with. OK.

    in a perfect world, we wouldn't bother (none / 0) (#14)
    by cpinva on Sat May 26, 2012 at 08:17:52 AM EST
    with locks and that kind of nonsense. let me know when the world becomes perfect. hopefully, the young lady has learned her lesson, and will get help with her obvious drinking problem, along with atoning for her stupidity.

    Maybe now (none / 0) (#23)
    by amateur on Sat May 26, 2012 at 11:42:04 AM EST
    developers will start building neighborhoods where all the houses don't look identical.  A very similar thing happened in Florida, only the drunk kid did not break in but was on the front step, and the bullet did significantly more damage.  The homeowner was himself devastated.

    Residential burglary... (none / 0) (#43)
    by Sentenza on Sat May 26, 2012 at 09:46:00 PM EST
    ...is entering and remaining unlawfully in a dwelling other than your own. It does not matter if the door is locked or unlocked. Ripple committed burglary by entering and remaining unlawfully in a dwelling that was not hers. In this case, the homeowners are the victims of a crime. They should not be responsible for someone burgling their house.  

    Every breath you take/ (none / 0) (#62)
    by fishcamp on Sun May 27, 2012 at 11:20:05 AM EST
    and every move you make/ every bond you break/ every step you take/ I'll be watching you.  We lock our doors and keep a gun by the bed.