Man in Wheelchair Robs Store With Knife, Gets Stuck in Sand

By Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. on February 28, 2012 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

A physical disability does not preclude you from being arrested for a crime.

John Champion, 22, didn't realize this when he rolled his wheelchair into a gas station located in Chiefland, Fla. Once inside, he pulled out a knife and demanded money, telling the clerk to "push the panic button because the police would not arrest a handicapped person."

Well, they did. After they found him and his wheelchair stuck in the sand, of course.

Apparently, the store clerk wasn't fazed by the taunting, and chose to grab the knife and stab John Champion in legs. Once wounded, the wheelchair bandit grabbed a case of beer and a roll of electric tape and then fled the store.

He was located on the backside of the property, drinking a Bud Light and with his wheelchair stuck in the sand. The purpose of the electrical tape is still unknown.

After being treated for his injuries, the Gainesville Sun reports he was booked into the county jail and charged with armed robbery and aggravated battery. He claims he didn't rob the store.

Though police can't find the knife they do have surveillance footage, according to the paper. Champion also told responding officers he had thrown the knife into the woods, admitting that he was armed when he stole the beer and tape.

Between the tape and his admission, prosecutors shouldn't have trouble convicting John Champion on either charge. Add the fact that his wheelchair prevented him from leaving the scene, and they've got a pretty solid case.

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