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Last Monday night a homeless crack addict tried to break into my apartment, intending to murder me. I am a 32 year old woman, I live alone and I need to be able to protect myself. My friends and family are unable to help me with advice on guns, as no one I know has one. I need guidance to choose a first shotgun that is easy to operate for a beginner, so I have protection in my house right away, and secondly to choose a small firearm for purchase after I pass the background check. I live in Los Angeles, CA and I have heard that you can get a shotgun without a waiting period. I need to take this situation back into my own hands, the police, although they saved my life, took about 20 minutes to apprehend this person and I am afraid that he will come back because they were unable to arrest him since he was caught two houses away and there was no proof at the time that it was him. Now I have security footage of the entire crime but since he was homeless the cops say there isn’t much chance of an arrest. I need to be able to be my own first responder and I don’t know where else to turn, so I came here. Please help me, any advice on which shotgun I should buy as my first gun, is appreciated, thank you!
 

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Lady move. You got the government the people of LA voted for. If you need a shotgun I would pick up a side by side in 20gague. The gun store employees can hele you out with ammo. 00 buck and slugs should do . Than go to a range and shoot it. Good luck
 

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Ancient Gaseous Emanation
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I'm not sure if you're legit or a troll. Either way, it doesn't matter... yet.

First, get yourself a dog. It doesn't need to be a big dog. A little yapper will do just fine. A dog making noise is a fine deterrent.

Asking questions on gun boards is a good way to gain knowledge. Another way is to visit several gun stores in your area https://www.yelp.com/search?find_desc=gun+shop&find_loc=Los+Angeles,+CA and ask questions. If you dislike the counter person's attitude move on to the next one... or to the next store. Nothing says you must purchase anything before you are ready.

If moving is a viable option, do so.
 

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Apartment might not allow pets, especially dogs. Apartments might also have prohibition against guns. So, read your lease; ask your landlord to install upgraded locks. You can get a baseball bat and a stun gun easily enough. Without training, your having a gun makes you a danger to yourself. Sorry, but that's the way it is.
 

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Kel-Tec KS7 with mini-shells is your best friend.
It is very maneuverable, relatively lightweight and when loaded with mentioned ammo has manageable recoil.
Moreover, it is easy to attach a tactical light on it as well as a budget red dot sight.

Also,

"Did an extensive range trip with my freshly repaired KS7 and it fired 200 Challenger mini shells without a single hiccup. Of course, also the 100 00/slugs I fired worked flawlessly, too.

That said, I will never shoot another 100 2 3/4" slugs or buckshots back to back with this shotgun again. It was a mandatory test and it passed, but my pecks are well tenderized for a while now -- as a comparison, I can easily shoot Mossy 500 or Rem 870 all day this combat shooting style without as much as slight red spots on my pecks. Also, quick and accurate follow up shots will take a bunch of practice with this feather-light platform.

The 200 minis, however, felt like your standard AKM kick, which is more than 5.56, but still something you can shoot all day without any issues. Staying on target with follow up shots is also a walk in a park because of that fact.

And yet, still, you're getting 12+1 5/8oz multiple or single projectile payloads screaming out of the barrel in excess of 1,200fps. If you need more than that to stop a bad guy or three, you have other more severe problems at hand...

It is also worth to mention the mini buckshots and slugs will STILL over-penetrate inner walls, so they are not a fool proof way to safely assume you won't get blue on blue in a home invasion situation, but they'll still allow you to engage through walls if you get a drop on the bad guy that way. This is worth to mention, because you still need enough energy in a defense payload to punch through intervening arms, hands, light concealment, etc.

After decades of involvement with shooting in both professional "shooting in anger" to civilian recreational shooting with a good command of physics to boot, I've yet to realize an adequate self-defense round of any caliber that would be perfect in practical ballistics of stopping a threat and also not penetrate sheet rock walls "too much".

My $.02 is that such thing is a unicorn until someone design and manufacture a brand new caliber and a tool to shoot it with keeping this one application and one application only in mind. Before then you need to make amendments over or under the proper effectiveness of the payload in use. And the aforementioned development will never happen, because arms designers want their weapons to fit MANY mission parameters, not be Johnny One Spell solutions. It's about sales after all.

I sold my perfectly functional KSG in favor of this model, I can say now that I have the tool that I needed for the task in mind and it works flawlessly after the initial repairs by Kel Tec. This is the closest combo of benefits with the less negatives I have found in the ocean of alternatives.

The purpose was/is home defense and that's now possible with the minis and much improved reliability when using them. The penetration is still more than perfectly ideal, but way better than with most handgun, intermediate rifle, or shotgun loads. It's as close to perfect I see you can get with all the benefits of a long gun, but in very maneuverable package.

KSG, while it also (sort of) cycles minis, was far less reliable with minis and also clumsier in house situations due to weight and general bulk. The problem with minis is that there is much more room for the minis to twist and turn before being pushed into chamber. It's a permanent design "flaw" and hence I opted to go with KS7 in a first place. It does fit the bill now better than anything available on the market today.

Everybody's mileage is subject to variation and opinions are like a-holes, but I'd safely argue that KS7 with minis is, at least at the time, the best combination in all accounts."

https://www.thektog.org/threads/mini-shells-in-the-ks7.270754/

 

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Grand Imperial Poobah
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As Popeye suggested, I concur, get a dog. A German Shepherd or Australian Shepherd make great protectors. They will make enough noise to scare off most criminals and wake you up in the process.

As for a shotgun, a Mossberg Shockwave in either 20 gauge or 410 gauge would be good for a home protection shotgun. Since you live in an apartment, I suggest using #4 to #7 birdshot. Buckshot will likely go through a wall, into your neighbor's apartment.
 
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I’m with Popeye. A dog makes me feel much safer even when I’m not at home. Go to a gun store and get some training. Keep electing liberals and democRats and no one will be able to defend themselves. Be safe and as much as a I hope you’re real, I hope you’re not.
 

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This is (supposedly) someone with ZERO gun experience. Suggesting a KS-7 is unreasonable. This person needs classes and instruction. In the meantime, a dog (if allowed), pepper spray, stun gun, bat, better locks all will work against a druggie
 

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Simplest shotgun to operate would be a breech loaded side by side.
keep the gauge small like a 20 to cut down on recoil.
simple learning curve. Get some practice so that the first time you shoot it is not in self defense.
I have single nieces who live far away and I worry about them.
May God bless you and keep you safe
 

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Mr.
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Last Monday night a homeless crack addict tried to break into my apartment, intending to murder me. I am a 32 year old woman, I live alone and I need to be able to protect myself. My friends and family are unable to help me with advice on guns, as no one I know has one. I need guidance to choose a first shotgun that is easy to operate for a beginner, so I have protection in my house right away, and secondly to choose a small firearm for purchase after I pass the background check. I live in Los Angeles, CA and I have heard that you can get a shotgun without a waiting period. I need to take this situation back into my own hands, the police, although they saved my life, took about 20 minutes to apprehend this person and I am afraid that he will come back because they were unable to arrest him since he was caught two houses away and there was no proof at the time that it was him. Now I have security footage of the entire crime but since he was homeless the cops say there isn’t much chance of an arrest. I need to be able to be my own first responder and I don’t know where else to turn, so I came here. Please help me, any advice on which shotgun I should buy as my first gun, is appreciated, thank you!
Move.
 
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Léitheoir
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Long term, I definitely agree with the idea of moving away from the People's Republic of California.

Short term, training first, Gun second. Go to a range that lets you rent firearms and find out which one you're most comfortable with.

Also, it may be worth looking into simple fortifications. Longer screws in door hardware. Inexpensive Shower Curtain Rods from Walmart are rather effective for locking windows. (Way better than those crappy locks most windows have.) Et Cetera. There are things you can do to make entrance to your dwelling more difficult than it's worth.
 

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Now I'm so confused, what happened to that enlightened California "violence never solved anything, if I die, I'm willing to be a victim, for the embetterment of society" schtick ?
 

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Last Stand on Earth
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Linds, if I were giving advice to someone I knew in your situation I’d tell them something like this:

Shotguns are better than nothing but due to the size, they can be easily taken away in tight quarters. Kind of like coming at someone with a ball bat. Get something small like a youth .410 that’s light and small, the shorter the better. As was mentioned earlier, you don’t want to shoot the neighbors, choose something smaller than buck shot, like #4 shot. It’ll definitely be a deterrent.

As for long term, it doesn’t sound like you have a lot of time to evaluate your choices. a Taurus.357 with a 4” barrel wouldn’t be a bad choice. It’ll be relatively inexpensive, easy to operate and It’ll shoot .38 special. 38 special out of a .357 shouldn’t be too bad with recoil. Once you get your hands on it, go to the range and shoot it. Ask for help from just about anyone.

Until you get really good with it, I’d load a CCI #4 shot shell (the red ones) as the first round when it’s loaded for home defense, followed by 5x .38 specials. The first shot would be smaller BB’s it will definitely wound the intruder but they’d have a chance at survival. If they keep coming, the .38 specials will kill them if you have to pull the trigger a second time or 3rd time.
 

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Mr.
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May be post a "guns free zone" sign on your door.
 
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California has a waiting period with the apparent sole purpose of giving the attacker one last chance to get you before you can get the means to defend yourself. Get out of California.

And get a revolver instead of a shotgun. It deploys more quickly, takes nothing more than it's off-the-shelf behavior to be safe and needs nothing more than a pull of the trigger to go boom. For simplicity, I'd recommend .38 Special. Get hollow point or at least semi-jacketed soft points ammunition.
 

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I don't fit in yer fasces
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Pepper spray. Read the directions. Start looking around the Internet for more self-defense information.

No, not all Californians are the same.

Seriously consider supporting political candidates who care more about you than they do about criminals.

We have a saying: A Republican is often just a Democrat who's been mugged.
 

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Jesus Saves
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I'll be honest, you are screwed. Damned if you do and damned if you don't. Your state leaders are allowing Jose Zarate free, even though 1) he is here illegally, 2) he murdered a young girl and 3) illegally had a gun.

Understand when the government is so open about not protecting its citizens, you are never safe; even when YOU do everything legally. NO ONE should be fearful for their life, especially in the USA. Until recently, YOU had laws protecting YOU and the criminals had laws to stop them. Today, we have the laws of politics protecting the criminal (especially illegals) and YOU have laws stopping you from protecting yourself (family). Your vote does not matter any longer so you do not matter any longer.

You need to move to a state that actually supports YOU and not the criminals. Move to state that allows you to protect yourself/family.

Our federal government needs to have the gonads to reprimand ANY state that does not follow the Constitution. This crap of locals, cities, states all determining what they want to follow should not be acceptable.

Move, buy a few guns, lots of ammo, a dog and do what you can to feel safe. As long as you are where you are, you're screwed. Always be prepared.
 

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I would suggest a mossberg 20gauge pump with a stock, not a pistol grip. In the grand scheme of gun pricing they are fairly cheap, easy to use and function quite well with a little practice. I would also suggest taking a gun safety course before your purchase and contacting a local gun club and ask about someone teaching you some basics and how to shoot and handle the shotgun. Most clubs i have been to there are usually members who are willing to show people how to shoot at no cost but there may be a cost associated with it. Do not expect to buy a gun and never shoot it until you need it. You will need practice and not just initially. Taking it out every so often and using it will keep you familiar with it.
 

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I don't know about CA, but in my state, PA, they run a background check for any type of gun purchase. I would caution you to take a gun safety course before buying one. If you do buy one, keep quiet about owning it, or else you'll have break-ins to get it. Being that you live in CA, shooting a person trying to hurt you may land you in prison for many years. Best bet, as others have said, get a dog. At the very least, get a can of wasp/hornet spray. This will totally blind a bad guy.
 
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