‘I do love him’: Elderly man ready to forgive after violent home invasion, robbery

‘I do love him’: Elderly man ready to forgive after violent home invasion, robbery
Charles Linebarger (WSOC)

HICKORY, N.C. — Police in Hickory are investigating a violent home invasion and robbery in which the homeowner had to be rushed to the hospital.

'I do love him': Elderly man ready to forgive after violent home invasion, robbery

The crime happened along 16th Street NE in Hickory where an elderly man told Channel 9 reporter Dave Faherty he was beaten and then robbed inside his home.

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Charles Linebarger said he was knocked unconscious and we could clearly see the injuries to the 72-year-old’s face. He still can’t open one of his eyes after someone came into his home and demanded money at gunpoint.

Linebarger said he was watching a movie and thought it was his brother at the door. Instead, a man wearing a toboggan walked in and put a gun to his head.

“I thought I was gonna die,” Linebarger told Channel 9. “When someone is putting a gun to your face pointing a gun at you, you just don’t know.”

Linebarger said he was injured when he tried to fight back, and at one point, lost consciousness. When he woke up, his wallet was gone, along with his rent money and cash for his water bill.

“Eventually, it’s gonna come to an end. Either you’re gonna hurt somebody or somebody is gonna hurt you,“ he said.

Police told Eyewitness News they have not made an arrest in the case and are still trying to identify a possible suspect.

Linebarger plans on meeting with police now that he is out of the hospital. He said he hopes the person is caught, but wants the thief to know he is ready to forgive.

“I do love him,” Linebarger said. “I go to church, and the Bible says if you’re gonna make it to heaven, you got to forgive and forget. It’s hard to forget, but you can forgive.”

Police are encouraging anyone with information on this case to contact investigators.

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