No where did I say to reload.
But I do advise that the threat be dead.
Fair question. The answer is a bit long, but briefly:
I was raised around shooting and hunting. I shot High Power (30-06 at 200 yards) when I was 13 or 14.
I raised my 3 kids to be able to do the same. I always emphasized safety first, and that if you point a gun at anything, you intend to kill it.
Target, can, dirt clod, or living thing.
One of my Son's was involved in a Home Invasion robbery. 3 good sized criminals smashed a sliding glass door and were upon him and his Fiance before he could hardly get to his feet.
One poked a 12 gauge shotgun against his chest. The other two jumped on his fiance and began beating her.
"Dad, for a second I thought it was over, I'm dead!" he told me.
But I guess my survival instincts kicked in. He grabbed the barrel and wound up behind the thug, with the shotgun against the guys throat in a choke fashion.
The two 17 year olds in the home came running, one with a baseball bat. The resulting melee was really bad. When one of the 17 year olds got his brains bashed half out of his head with his own bat, the Son's adrenalin kicked in.
He had wrestled the perp to where he was near his gun safe in the closet. When he saw his to-be step-son with his brains hanging out, he literally threw the guy back acrossed the room.
That gave him moments to 1. Get the key off the top. 2. Unlock the safe. 3. Get the Browning High Power 9mm I had given him 5 months before from my collection.
The other 17 year old (a friend) yelled out "Shannon's got his gun!"
That sent the 3 criminals into flight.
The Son in pursuit, he doesn't want to fire because he does not know where the fiance was. When he rounded the corner of the hall way he saw two big dark figures collide and bounce back into the room. He began firing.
He told me "I could tell I was hitting by the way their bodies were jerking around."
They manged to get outside and the Son followed cutting his feet badly on the broken glass.
He fired one more shot as they rounded the corner of the house. Then as he rounded the corner he saw one dark figure ahead of him. He drew down, and the training kicked in, focus, pause, fire.
He hit the figure center mass and the 9mm P++ took the heart out of the chest. The guy made it about 12 feet and fell like a tree face first on the road. The Son ran to the road and saw the perp with the shotgun round the corner and go out of sight.
The Son checked the fallen one and could see he was dead.
"Here I am! Come and get me!" he yelled into the night. Just then, the 3rd one tried to run from his hiding place by a bush, acrossed the road, and he collapsed into a large manzanita bush.
The Son ran up to where he collapsed and the guy pleaded, "I'm hurt, I'm hurt." The Son saw he was no threat and not going anywhere. He told him to "Stay there and don't get up!"
He could hear a siren coming and as he stepped back onto the road a cop car slid around the corner code 3. As the cop came to a sliding stop near the dead guy, my Son laid the gun down, stepped back and laid down face first spread eagle.
Then his Fiance ran up and he told her to GET ON THE GROUND! NOW!
The first ambulance hauled the bush guy to the local hospital. DOA, he bled out from 5 leg wounds. (Probably a femoral artery)
The dead one in the road had 2 wounds. One just above the buttocks, and one threw the heart.
About 5 hours later, the Grandmother of the DOS criminal called the police and turned in #3.
"I didn't want to kill those guys, Dad." He said tearfully.
"Of course not. But you saved everybody in the house." I told him.
"What you taught us to do is what saved us." he said.
"No. You saved them. You did what you had to when it had to be done."
The detectives, the police officers, a second counties investigators, AND the FBI... ruled it self defense.
Perp #3 is doing 8 in Folsom Prison for Home Invasion.
The shotgun was found in a field near the Grandmother's home 2 weeks later. It had been stolen from another home invasion where an 80 year old man had been beaten near to death. The old man was still in the hospital.
Forensics found skin from my Son's thumb in the receiver of it from when he had stuck his thumb in to stop the guy from jacking a shell in during the fight.
I can't get back to the actual newspaper article. But Elizabeth Larson (reporter) gave the best factual coverage of the incident.
Here is a little.