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Former SWAT Member Upsets Neighbor After Not Intervening When Witnessing Burglars Robbing His House


Deciding whether or not to intervene in a potentially dangerous situation is luckily something most of us never face.

Redditor jpuddd did, but now they’re wondering if they did the right thing. So they turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for some internet judgment.

jpuddd provided their military background before delving into their post.

“A little backstory, i was in the military for 5 years, have been in the SWAT team for 3. I own A LOT of guns, i know how to use them very well.”

“I live at home with my gf and our newborn. My next door neighbors had gone out of town to visit the husbands sick mother.”

Then, late one night, the Original Poster (OP) noticed suspicious activity outside.

“My bedroom directly faces their backyard. I go to sleep pretty late most nights, and around 1AM i see 4 masked guys busting ass through my backyard and hopping the fence in to my neighbors.”

“they then proceed to break the latch on my neighbors back door, and head inside.”

“instantly i call the cops. while waiting for the cops to arrive, all 4 of the men rush out of the house and run off into the woods. they clearly had thought some of this through.”

“they’re long gone by the time the cops arrive. i tell the cops what i saw and call it a night.”

“next day, my neighbors show up earlier than planned to assess the damage. my neighbor walks across the yard and opens my fence after i wave him in.”

“conversation starts off light but he eventually brings up the fact that the police told him i witnessed everything.”

“He then proceeds to question why i did nothing to stop it. the intruders didn’t have guns by the looks of it and i’d had years of tactical training.”

“he suggests i could’ve scared them off or injured them before they made it out with all their savings (which still hasn’t been found)”

Despite what the neighbor had to say, the OP stayed true to their convictions.

“in my humble opinion, after being in firefights, the only battles that you should be in are the vital ones.”

“the ones you need for victory and safety. i have a girlfriend and a baby 20 feet away, it isn’t legal to shoot at another’s property, and it mostly wasn’t my problem.”

“call me selfish but, any risk of these burglars trying ANYTHING on my family, i wasn’t going to take that chance.”

“maybe i could’ve stopped 4 guys had i rushed the home with my guns, but that is not my job. that is the police on duties job.”

“obviously had it been my home it would have been different, but my family was safe and that’s what mattered.”

The OP asked for judgment from their fellow Redditors by declaring him:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
  • NAH – No A**holes Here

“NTA, you got your girlfriend and your kid to take care and you wasn’t sure robbers had guns.” – wilhelmllw

“Agreed. The neighbor is absolutely insane to expect OP to go around dolling out vigilante justice.”

“That’s a good way to open yourself up to legal trouble as well as potentially hurting yourself and others.”

“Finally, there is no reason to escalate this situation into a confrontation. The neighbor’s property is not worth OP’s life, his family’s life, or even the lives of those robbers.”

“OP did the exact right thing. Call the police and witness everything from a safe distance.” – sk9592

“NTA. What were you supposed to do. 1v4 menbat night?”

“Even if you had a gun, you would have had to shoot people. Of your neighbor expects that much from you then there is something wrong with them.” – MrSleepingDoge

This Redditor expressed how much they despised neighbors like the one mentioned here.

“They were out of town so there was no danger. I’m sure you would have handled yourself just fine, but it’s an unnecessary risk.”

“You’re at a disadvantage in the fight because (i’m assuming) you’re a law abiding citizen while the robbers are not.”

“You called the cops that’s it simple as that. Your only job was to make sure your family was safe and that your house wasn’t next.”

“F’k your neighbor for expecting you to leave your family and potentially put them in danger as well as yourself in order to potentially save their materialistic items.” – rahimmoore26

“Exactly. It’s not even like they were home and OP would have been potentially protecting their lives. Just their stuff.”

“NTA, and your neighbor apparently values their things more than your life.” – JulesLovesYou1993

Meanwhile, people had strong opinions about the neighbor’s alleged banking practices.

“Who the f’k leaves the entirety of their savings inside their houses in physical form in a place where robbers would know where it is almost right away?” – LeedleLord9999

“You DO NOT leave your life savings in physical cash, you put them in a bank account.”

“And if you do have large amounts of cash in the house, invest in a secure safe. They clearly didn’t have one given the fact the robbers went in and out in mere minutes.” – darthvadercake

Regardless of the OP’s training, Redditors generally agreed they did the right thing by calling the police and leaving it up to them to handle matters.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo