Australia: Office worker who killed a home invader reveals he is still haunted by his 'heat of the moment' decision to confront the drug-fuelled bodybuilder once crowned Asia's Strongest Man - - PressFrom - Australia
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Australia Office worker who killed a home invader reveals he is still haunted by his 'heat of the moment' decision to confront the drug-fuelled bodybuilder once crowned Asia's Strongest Man

22:05  13 october  2019
22:05  13 october  2019 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

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a man and a woman posing for a picture: Brad Soper (pictured with ex- girlfriend Kaisha) died during a home invasion earlier this year© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Brad Soper (pictured with ex- girlfriend Kaisha) died during a home invasion earlier this year

A man who confronted an intruder fuelled by drugs is still traumatised by the deadly home invasion eight months on and says he can't put the chilling incident behind him until an inquest is completed.

Married father-of-one Johann Francois Schwartz, 44, woke to the sound of his dogs barking and found bodybuilder Brad Soper, 35, in the lounge room of his Harrington Park home in Sydney's south-west on February 17.

The South African-born office worker tackled the intruder once crowned Asia's Strongest Man to the ground, where a struggle ensued between the pair before Soper collapsed and died.

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Camila Ibarra et al. sitting at a table: Mr Schwartz (pictured with wife and child) battled post-traumatic stress syndrome afterwards© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Mr Schwartz (pictured with wife and child) battled post-traumatic stress syndrome afterwards

Mr Schwartz spent ten hours being interviewed by police before he was released.

He was later cleared any wrongdoing by investigators, who believe Soper had been on a drug binge wandering the streets before stumbling into the stranger's home through an open garage door.

Mr Schwartz battled post-traumatic stress syndrome afterwards and still remains haunted by his actions in the heat of the moment but says he acted on instinct amid fears for the safety of his wife and young child.

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He admitted this week he could have handled the situation better by calling police or activating the house alarm rather than confronting Soper.

'I think about it now and again and wonder what would have happened had I done that instead,' Mr Schwartz told The Daily Telegraph.

a man that is standing in the grass: Police believe Brad Soper had been on a drug binge wandering the streets before stumbling into a stranger's home in Harrington Park in February© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Police believe Brad Soper had been on a drug binge wandering the streets before stumbling into a stranger's home in Harrington Park in February a group of people in front of a house: Mr Schwartz is still haunted by the deadly home invasion at his home (pictured)  in February© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Mr Schwartz is still haunted by the deadly home invasion at his home (pictured)  in February

'It's very frightening, you are all that's between him and your wife and toddler, and you have to do what you have to do. You must be brave, even if you are s**t-scared.

'You have no idea who you are facing and that is why it's so hard to make a measured response that's in line with the threat you face.'

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Despite being cleared, Mr Schwartz now regrets giving up his his passport in a show of good faith, which he didn't get back from police until September, seven months after the incident.

Mr Schwartz said he was blown away grateful for the support from his employer and his community in recent months.

He added he was super-conscious of and still feels for Soper's family and friends.

At his funeral, the personal trainer and amateur weightlifter was remembered as a 'good and kind' person.

His School of Strong Instagram account shows him competing in various Strongman competitions around the world and was crowned 'Asia's Strongest Man' in 2017.

Soper's last post a month before his death was footage of him deadlifting 250kg for 14 reps at a strongman competition in Goa, India, where he came third.

Devastated family and friends were shocked to hear of Soper's actions leading up to his death.

a man and a dog lying on a bed: After the fatal home invasion Mr Schwartz spent ten hours being interviewed by police before he was released© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited After the fatal home invasion Mr Schwartz spent ten hours being interviewed by police before he was released

It's understood Soper's mental state went downhill several months earlier after a break-up with girlfriend Kaisha Gambell.

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'He hadn't taken it well at all, he still had a broken heart,' his father Raymond Soper told Daily Mail Australia at the time.

'They had been going out for well over 12 months, I'd say. We met her and she was a very nice girl.'

He was at a loss for words as to why his son entered and ransacked Mr Schwartz's home in a 'zombie-like state'.

'All I can say is it was all out of character for Bradley. We feel that he's had some sort of a breakdown or something,' Mr Soper said.

'There's no way he would go into anyone's place intentionally, there's just no way.'

Joe Williams, a former NRL player, professional boxer and close friend of Mr Soper, said he knew nothing of the 35-year-old's troubles.

'He was a decent guy mate. I'm shocked at the circumstances,' Williams said at the time.

'Breaking into someone's house? That's not the Brad I knew. That's not how we want to remember him.

'It's completely out of character... it's hard to believe it's actually him.'

a man and a woman sitting on a couch: The personal trainer and amateur weightlifter was remembered as a 'good and kind' person© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The personal trainer and amateur weightlifter was remembered as a 'good and kind' person

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