Blind man recovering after break-in in Center Line

CENTER LINE, Mich. (WXYZ) - A thief broke into a blind man's apartment on Tuesday, knocking him down and ransacking one of the bedrooms to look for valuables. The incident happened in Center Line.

Everything in Francis Champion's apartment has a proper place. He is so organized that even his sweaters hang in the closet with their matching pants. He does this because it is a necessity for him. 

The 33-year-old lost his vision five years ago from complications with diabetes. While it's been life changing, nothing could have prepared him for what happened to him this morning.

"I just started praying. I didn't know what was going to happen next," said Francis.

His nightmare began around 6 a.m. when he thought he heard someone shooting his front door.

"When he kicked the door in, that's what I heard. It was like a huge blast," said Francis.

Francis jumped out of bed. He said he will never forget what happened next.

"As soon as I turned the corner coming out of my bedroom, he just ran past me and he just knocked me down," said Francis.

He did not know how many intruders were there or what they wanted. But in the back room he could hear drawers being rifled through and thrown to the ground.

"I wasn't getting back up because I didn't know what was going on. And I didn't say anything because I didn't want them to try and attack me or do something to me," said Francis.

He focused on surviving the break-in. He curled into a fetal position and prayed.    

"I just asked God, I don't want it to be painful whatever happens. I just didn't want it to be painful," said Francis.

The bad guy left without hurting Francis anymore and he did not steal anything, not even the money sitting on the dresser. Center Line Police believe the guy ransacked the wrong apartment.

There is no security guard at Lawrence Park. Visitors get through the locked doors by buzzing apartments.  Management tells 7 Action News that they only have security guards on an 'as needed' basis. 

"I don't feel safe," said Francis. He believes resident safety should be a top priority and from now on he would like to see a guard at the front door signing people in and out of the building.

Center Line Police are reviewing surveillance video from the apartment building and are working on getting a still picture of the suspect in case anyone can identify him. 

If you have any information please call the Center Line Police Department at (586) 757-2206. 

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