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Blaming the victim

The internet news stories are flying. A woman gets drunk and breaks into a home at 3:30 in the morning. Confronted by an armed homeowner and given orders to halt, the intruder continued advancing towards them while shining a flashlight in the homeowner‘s face, and was shot. After she was shot, she pulled out a cell phone and made a call. The female intruder is taken to the hospital, where tests confirm that her blood alcohol was 0.2%. The woman was identified as Zoey Ripple, a recent graduate of the University of Colorado, who pled guilty to shoplifting in 2010.

ABC story here.

The homeowners are a pair of psychiatrists. The female of the couple was stalked by an unbalanced schizophrenic patient, who ultimately had a restraining order placed against her. They live in a $3 million home, and were sleeping with the door open, and a screen in place.

In the comments on these articles, many people are critical of the homeowners for a number of reasons. Among these reasons:
– They are just rich assholes.- This reason is stupid. The posters who claim this are dick bags who think that having money means that you deserve whatever happens to you.
– The intruder was just drunk and had no intent to commit a crime. -Since when does being drunk excuse you from following the law? and whether she intended to commit a crime or not, she did. What she did is a crime.
– The intruder was a pretty female. Ah, yes. We all know that pretty woman are never criminals.
– She was a “good girl” and helped organize a campus coat drive last winter and spent the summer of 2010 teaching English to children in Guatemala. She was also a convicted criminal. “Real” criminals usually don’t just begin their first day as a career criminal by robbing a bank, they start small. As the homeowner, am I supposed to do a background check before defending myself?
– The homeowners are at fault for leaving the door open. This sounds suspiciously like the “She wanted it, or she wouldn’t be dressed that way.” defense.

There are a host of reasons to not be so drunk that you do stupid things like commit felonies. She could have been robbed or raped. Instead, she chose to break into a home, and fail to heed the armed homeowner’s warning, and continued to advance on him while blinding him with a flashlight. From the homeowner’s perspective, he couldn’t see if the intruder had a weapon or an accomplice with a weapon, nor could he possibly know what the intruder’s intent or criminal history was.

This could easily be avoided if the girl had not broken into a house and charged an armed homeowner.

A tip to homeowners: Put a really bright flashlight on your home defense gun, so an intruder can’t blind you with a light of their own. Had this been an armed person, the homeowner may well have been killed.

2 replies on “Blaming the victim”

For the most part the comments I read were in defense of the homeowner, even the ones at HuffPo(gasp!). Seems most everyone agrees, this girl messed up wandering into someones house and what happened afterwards was totally justified.

I can just hear the thoughts running though that dumb blondes brain…I'm a nice person; why would they harm me!?!?!

Steve

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