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A 74-year-old Texas grandmother always keeps a gun nearby, and that decision proved to be a an important one Sunday night, when a criminal broke into her home.

Rebbie Roberson, 74, was just about to watch the news Sunday night when someone wearing gloves and a mask broke into her home.

“And when I started to get up, he was in here on me with a gun facing me right to my face.”

What she did next took the gunman by surprise.

Now, Bowie County Sheriff’s deputies are looking for the would-be bandit.

“So I had to walk right out in front of him,” Roberson said as she recalled the harrowing encounter. “I didn’t know if he was going to kill me or what.”

She had her own weapon on a table nearby.

“I reached over there and grabbed this gun. And when I swerved around, I pointed it at him and he ran.”

With her .38-caliber pistol in hand, Roberson said she followed him, all the while firing her gun and leaving bullet holes in the walls of her home.

“I’m not sure I didn’t hit him. I don’t know yet. I sure tried. I sure was hoping.

“That was the scare of my life.”

Investigators do not believe the armed intruder was wounded.

“I tried to kill him. Anybody break in on me, I’m going to kill them. He’s going to kill me or I’m going to kill him.”

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Mrs. Roberson remembered the first rule of gunfighting: she had a gun. Unfortunately (or fortunately, if you’re the robber), she doesn’t appear to have been very proficient with it. She does not appear to have harmed anything other than her own drywall.

If we’re honest, merely having a gun is good enough for most defensive gun uses. The vast majority of criminals are looking for an easy score, not a gun battle. They’re going to disengage and flee the scene as quickly as they can when a good guy (or grandma) presents a weapon, or if they can’t clearly see the weapon, after they start hearing gunshots. In this instance, it appears that the bad guy saw the gun and began to run.

The “merely having a gun and the will to fire it” starts to fall apart, however, when the assailant’s primary goal isn’t profit, but is instead causing harm. This could be anything from a domestic violence incident, to a personal grudge, to an active shooter, to simply running into a hardened criminal who has been in gunfights before and simply isn’t afraid of being shot.

It’s at this point where having the ability to put multiple shots on small targets at speed under pressure becomes vital, and that’s where good defensive firearms training matters.

Grandma Roberson was very lucky that she encountered a criminal that didn’t want to fight.

You may not be that lucky, so be prepared.