BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - What would you do if your quiet night at home was interrupted by an intruder? Do you take flight and run or do you stand your ground and fight to protect what's yours?
According to the FBI, a burglary happens, on average, every 10 to 15 seconds, and there could be a chance a person is still inside the home.
Former Baton Rouge Police Chief Jeff LeDuff said people have three options when dealing with an intruder: runaway, fight or hide. That is why LeDuff, who has over 30 years of law enforcement experience, encourages people to have a plan.
"Is there a place in your house that you can successfully hide?" asked LeDuff. "Can you get out of a rear exit and run if there is a clear shot to vacate yourself? Because there is nothing in your house worth getting harm for."
LeDuff suggests that people need to get to know their neighbors. He said always having a couple of extra eyes keeping watch is not a bad idea. He also stresses that people invest in a reliable alarm system. He shared a story of when he was a young officer responding to an emergency.
"A lady had been beaten pretty band. She lived alone and was elderly, not a lot of mobility. There were neighbors, but no one heard anything. She would have benefited with an alarm system," said LeDuff.
In the event that you have to fight, LeDuff showed a couple of techniques that may help you defend yourself.
"I want people to remember that no one can hold you. Hands are not design to hold you," said LeDuff. "If you grab me, because the thief is going to grab you with his hand, remember that the thumb is the weakest point of the hand if I roll towards that thumb. I come out."
If someone grabs you by your clothes, he said to always keep "pain" in mind.
"Pain is a great motivator. A distraction is a great thing," said LeDuff. "I tell everybody if you just remember on a man's body the cuticle is a very painful thing."