Defending Your Castle in Montana
Learning a new state’s laws can be a somewhat difficult thing to learn. Each state has its own identity with the laws and regulations put into place.
It’s only when something happens that you tend to look it up… and I didn’t want to be a statistic.
This past weekend my spouse had to leave Billings for a family engagement.
I felt safe since all of our windows and doors lock, and I have three dogs who bark when something goes bump in the night.
However, it wasn’t until my spouse actually left that I started to get suspicious. I constantly kept checking doors and windows, making sure an intruder couldn’t have an easy entry point. We did just move here about 6 weeks ago, but that doesn’t mean something can’t happen. I like to be a prepared woman who is home alone occasionally.
In the quiet of the night, I heard something weird hit my window downstairs… it could’ve been a bird, a cat, the wind, anything… but my mind started wandering.
What if it’s a person trying to get in my home?
I decided to look up the Montana state law regarding an intruder entering my casa and what can be done if this were to happen.
The “Make My Day Law” in (my old home state) Colorado has similarities to Montana’s “Castle Doctrine” which states:
"Montana allows the use of force to protect one's self or others from immediate harm, as long as the person believes it necessary to prevent serious injury or death. Force can be used in defense of one's home if the person believes the aggressor is trying to force their way inside. It does not seem to include the use of deadly force in self defense."
In laments terms, if you feel your life is threatened it’s lawful to shoot the intruder.
However, there are grey areas.
For example, you can’t just wait for someone to come onto your property and shoot them. Your life “isn’t in danger” if someone is just walking through your yard or property. Now, say the person has a gun in their hand and they’re acting strange… you still cannot shoot them until you feel your life is threatened.
This story isn’t about debating whether or not someone can shoot a trespasser.
This story is about safety, and the precautions one takes to keep one's OWN LIFE/ family safe.
Lock your doors, and windows if you feel that's necessary.
I’m up to date with the Castle Doctrine in Montana, and we do own several guns. I feel safer knowing the laws of what I can and can’t do.
Again this isn’t any sort of legal advice, but I want people to be aware of what is lawful and what isn’t. This is just an awareness on my part if my spouse were to leave again.
And just on a friendly note: keep the guns locked up, away from the kids. We don’t even have children and ours are locked up in our house. Cheers to protecting yourself!