Oops: Home Invaders Brought Knives To A Rifle Fight In Michigan

Two home invaders armed with knives raided the wrong home in Tawas City (MI) last night, and found themselves staring down the barrel of a rifle as the homeowner opened fire.

An apparent burglary in Tawas City went awry for two intruders, ending with one dead and another injured.

About 8:20 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 13, troopers from the Michigan State Police West Branch Post responded to a home invasion/shooting complaint in the 800 block of Fir Street. They had been dispatched after a 911 call was placed of rifle shots and a man going door-to-door with a gun, a police said in a press release.

“The initial investigation revealed the subject who was going door to door was seeking help regarding a home invasion and robbery which had just occurred in his residence,” said Special 1st Lt. David Kaiser in the press release.

The 66-year-old man was in his home when two men entered, both wearing masks and brandishing hunting-type knives. The men attempted to rob him, but the resident shot them both with a rifle, Kaiser said.

One suspect, a 21-year-old Oscoda man, was dead and still wearing his mask when troopers arrived. The second suspect, a 29-year-old man also from Oscoda, received treatment for a gunshot wound on scene and then flown to a Saginaw hospital.

There’s not a great deal more detail available about this case at the time, but it does appear that the victim isn’t likely to be prosecuted in what is a fairly clearcut case of armed self defense where the criminals got in way over their heads with a senior who knows his away around a gun.

An interesting tidbit: the homeowner apparently had no idea who the two robbers were. In many home invasions the suspects are at least acquaintances who are targeting some specific object or objects in the home, typically cash, drugs, jewelry, or some other relatively small and lightweight valuable they can easily grab and transport. It is going to be interesting if the second suspect survives and is able to tell the Michigan State Police why they targeted this home.

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Rifles—especially today’s wide array of 5.45 and 5.56 semi-automatic carbines and their “pistol” variants—are a very solid home defense choice favored by many firearms experts for their combination of adaptability, maneuverability, on-call volume of fire, precision, power, and magazine capacity, and while it may be a surprise to many, basic FMJ and varmint hunting rounds in these calibers tend to fragment and run less of a risk of over-penetration in common materials when compared to buckshot from a shotgun or a jacketed hollowpoint from a handgun.

I know several instructors who sleep with a pistol with a weapon-mounted light on the nightstand, but with a 5.56 carbine (also equipped with a WML and usually a red-dot sight) leaning against the wall within an arm’s reach.

It’s worth considering.