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Home Invasion Suspect Dead After 82-year-old Victim Fights Back

JACKSON, SOUTH CAROLINA — A home invasion and assault suspect is dead after allegedly forcing his way into the home of an elderly couple Monday afternoon and attacking them with a knife, following a bludgeoning at the hands of the 82-year-old male, according to the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office.

The couple told the ACSO officers that a man came to their door Monday afternoon, forced his way into their home, and attacked them with a knife. According to the incident report, the 79-year-old wife was cut on her forehead.

The woman’s husband fought back, repeatedly striking the intruder with the butt of a gun and stopping the attack.  Deputies found the suspect, bloody and unresponsive, on the floor. He was transported to a hospital where he later died, according to Aiken County Coroner Darryl Ables, who added that an autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death.  He was identified by authorities on Tuesday as 61-year-old Harold L. Runnels Jr.

The couple told deputies they had seen the man walking in their neighborhood a few times but had no idea why he forced his way into their home and attacked them. While the husband showed extreme bravery or courage in defending his wife, it would have required much less physical effort on his part if the firearm he used as a club would have been functioning and loaded. Regardless, chalk up one for good and zero for evil.

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