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Wheelchair Man Charged In Convenience Store Robbery

CHIEFLAND (CBSMiami) – A Chiefland man's cunning plan to hold up a convenience store with a knife all went south, according to police, when his wheelchair got stuck in the sand behind the store when he tried to make his get away.

The Chevron clerk told police that 22-year old John Christopher Champion, who was wearing a Gators hat and Gators sweatshirt, had been going in and out of the store for several hours in his motorized wheelchair. Just before 10 p.m., the clerk said Champion piloted his chair behind the counter and demanded cash from the register as he brandished a pocket knife.

The 54-year old clerk said she fought back and in her struggle with Champion she stabbed him three times in the leg before he overpowered her. He then allegedly rolled out of the store with a 12-pack of beer and a roll of electrical tape.

When officers arrived, they found Champion stuck in the sand behind the store drinking a Bud Light Lime, according to the Gainesville Sun.

When confronted, police said Champion admitted to stealing the beer and tape from the store but added that he didn't rob it. He also told police that he urged the clerk to hit the alarm button because they would never arrest a handicapped person.

He got that wrong.

Champion was arrested and charged with armed robbery and aggravated battery. He was then treated for the stab wounds in his leg and booked into the Levy County jail.

The Gainesville Sun contributed to this report.

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