I'm trying to determine what I can do in my home to protect against intruders and mainly theft. I know about the make my day law in colorado but I'm not sure about when I can use my firearm in a situation that is not clearly a lethal threat to me
If I were you, I would look up your state laws and not take information on this forum as fact. Not that these guys on here are not intelligent (because there is a ton of knowledge on this forum) but you need to the laws inside and out with your situation that you are talking about. And myself personally wouldn't rely on a forum with my freedom.
Just google "colorado laws for self defense." I just did that and read the laws on your question. It is too long to write down but was good info. Also go to www.state.co.us/gov that has the revised statutes.
It varies by state, even between those states that have 'Castle Doctrines'. In Texas, I don't have to make a judgement about whether that guy is armed or not, wishes me bodily harm or just wants to steal my stuff.
In Florida we have the 'Castle Doctrine,' which covers both home and vehicle. For home protection of the firearm owners you can't ask for more.
For home security ADT security setup, 12 g shotgun, and three dogs who are the sharpest of alert alarms. Can't ask for more.
Here in PA we also have the castle doctrine deadly force may be used when confronted with deadly force. No crack head is going to hurt or injure me or my family period.
That "when confronted with deadly force" would be the part that would worry me. It infers that you must make a judgement about the intruder's intentions, as well as determine how he is armed. If you shoot him & he has no firearm, could you be in trouble?
If there is an intruder and he does not flee once confronted, there is a generally accepted inference about intent. It's outside of the dwelling that the intent needs to be better inferred to justify using deadly force, even in Castle Doctrine states like ours. Even with the law on your side, you have to be right.
You were given good advice to research the Colorado law rather than take the word of anyone.
Good advice by all. Definitely check your state laws. Living in California has a tendency to hamstring an individual if and when it comes to making a life changing decision such as this. All 3 of my children are in LE and are always quick to tell mom and dad that if anyone threatens us in our home or business, that it's better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6.