Hercules Champaign III is perhaps the most unlikely home invader we’ve run across in a long time, but he still earned his bullets under the law.
Neighbors sometimes saw Hercules Champaign III walking slowly through their Bradford Chase neighborhood northwest of Summerville. The 36-year-old man had braces on his legs and often used a cane to get around.
On Sunday, authorities said, Champaign grabbed at least one cane and walked across his quiet street, Bainsbury Lane, to a neighbor’s house. Around 1 p.m., according to the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, Champaign went inside and started beating the homeowner’s dog with the cane.
Champaign refused to leave when the resident confronted him, deputies said, so with his 10-year-old daughter in the house, the resident fetched a handgun and fired twice, wounding Champaign.
I feel a great deal of sympathy for the homeowner in this circumstance.
Hercules Champaign entered the man’s home, then cornered and attacked the homeowner’s pet. Champaign refused to listen to reason, and the metal cane in his hands was certainly being used as a weapon. Fearing for both his pets and the child who was home at the time, the homeowner seemingly had little recourse than to retrieve and fire his handgun at the irrational assailant (you do not want to get into a grappling match with someone used to using a cane and leg braces, as they typically have better-than-average upper body strength).
Champaign was struck in the face and right side, and was last reported in serious condition, but was expected to survive.
One resident of the neighborhood said that Champaign had verbally threatened someone else in the neighborhood shortly before invading the home, and the sheriff’s department released a statement that a “series of events” led up to the attack, suggesting that Champaign was acting very irrationally and perhaps had some sort of psychological break or substance abuse issue leading up to the attack.
Like most attacks—no matter how bizarre they are—this incident came without warning, and could have been much worse if the intruder had focused on the homeowner or his daughter instead of the dog.
Champaign has not yet been charged, but may face a multitude of criminal charges when he’s released from the hospital.