Family puzzled by man's erratic behavior - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Lori Brown

Family puzzled by man's erratic behavior

A Mid-South family remained puzzled Monday after the erratic behavior of one of their family members ended up landing him in jail.

Investigators named Walter Sampson as the man who tried to rob Signature Finance on Madison with a fake bomb Wednesday.  His brother, Tim Sampson, said Monday the Walter Samson he knows would never do such a thing.

"He's the most huge-hearted, non-violent, sweet young man," Tim Sampson said. "Great father...had lunch with him and his two kids two weeks ago.  Nothing at all to suggest that anything like this was going to happen.

According to investigators, before the attempted robbery, Sampson carjacked a woman's Chevy at the Starbucks on Union Avenue at McLean.  Tim Sampson said his brother had been suffering from recent financial difficulties, but "nothing that should cause something this drastic."

Tim Sampson said the married father of two teenage boys did go through a traumatic experience ten years ago, when he discovered his mother, dead, after an accident.

"(She was) cleaning her kitchen at work and slipped and fell on a butcher knife sticking up from a dishwasher drawer," he said. "(It) went through her throat."

Sampson said it was possible his brother was still dealing with the painful discovery.

"I think he shut down for a long time," he said. "Maybe that memory is coming back."

Tim Sampson said he wanted the people who went through the scary ordeal Wednesday to know they're safe.

"He would not ever hurt anyone," he said.


Click here to send an email to Lori Brown.

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