Early one morning, in October of 2018, 24-year-old Christopher Austin Desmarais attempted a home invasion. According to police, Desmarais beat on the door and tried to get into the home around 1:30 a.m.
When that didn’t work, he tried go through a window while armed with a handgun. However, the homeowner met Desmarais as he came through the window and shot him with a shotgun. Desmarais died from the shotgun blast.
Thankfully, the homeowner was prepared and the intruder wasn’t able to get into the house that night to harm him or his family. Thankfully, he also had a firearm.
Now, there are always going to be debates about which is the best gun for home defense from pistols to shotguns to AR-15s.
The reality is, the gun you have at that time is the best gun for home defense, but the shotgun has long been one of the most respected guns for home defense for a few main reasons.
First, is the range capability of the shotgun. What I mean is, home defense confrontations are often measured in feet, not yards.
Unless you live in a mansion with a long hallway, chances are you will encounter an intruder in close-quarters where a shotgun can be very effective.
Another reason shotguns are popular for home defense is the firepower you can send toward your threat. For example, the standard 00 buckshot shell sends nine .33 caliber projectiles downrange at velocities well above those of many handguns.
It may not send an intruder flying through a plate glass window like a Hollywood movie, but with some of the hotter buckshot loads, each pellet has nearly the same energy of a .32ACP round.
The ability to create multiple wound channels with one shot, greatly increases the chance of hitting vital organs and stopping a threat.
In addition, shotguns are one of the most familiar guns to people who don’t regularly use guns. If you have a spouse or family member who doesn’t regularly train with firearms or isn’t comfortable with guns, chances are they’ve at least been exposed to the shotgun because it’s so common.
For instance, maybe they shot clays one time with a buddy or went pheasant hunting with their uncle growing up. For those folks who aren’t gun enthusiasts, hitting a target is simply easier with a long gun such as a shotgun.
Since shotguns remain popular for many different reasons, I want to share with you a few shotguns that are quality firearms for home defense, that won’t break the bank.
Remington 870. Remington is a name associated with quality firearms and there is no question the 870 delivers when it comes to reliability. The 870 has been a staple weapon for a variety of users, including police and hunters and has been touted as one of the most reliable home defense shotguns.
The 870 doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles, but has an 18.5” barrel and 7-round capacity magazine. It is equipped to fire both 2 ¾” and 3” 12-gauge shells, which provides plenty of options for the shooter. The 870 is straightforward and is simple to operate making it a very popular choice for home defense. The entry level 870 starts around $330.
Mossberg 500 Home Defense. The Mossberg Home Defense shotgun comes from the factory set up for it’s main purpose of home defense. It comes with a black matte finish with tactical grips and some models include a flash suppressor.
Mossberg’s Home Defense shotgun holds 6 shells plus one in the chamber. The pistol grip, which comes standard, can be very beneficial for home defense purposes. The Mossberg 500 Home Defense starts around $300.
Winchester Super X Defender. The Super X comes with a matte finish and a relatively short barrel designed to throw a wide pattern of shot, making it an excellent home defense option. The biggest advantage to the Super X is that it’s suited for hunting and home defense, making it a bit of a survivalist weapon.
It has a traditional brass-bead front sight and a fixed-cylinder-choke barrel that easily handles both slugs and buckshot. The black matte finish eliminates glare to keep your position under wraps. For the price, you really can’t go wrong with this Winchester model. The Winchester Super X starts around $300.
The reality is, most home defense confrontations end without shots being fired because many perpetrators flee when confronted by a homeowner.
However, if you ever find yourself in a situation like the homeowner mentioned above and you are confronting an armed intruder, I hope you are prepared with a quality home defense weapon such as a shotgun, because your life may depend on it.