Meet the "Silent Man" who mysteriously blocks traffic without uttering a word

For four years, a mysterious man known as the "Silent Man" repeatedly blocked traffic on a busy street in Swansea, South Wales. His real name is David Hampson, but he has never confirmed it or spoken a word to anyone, even when facing arrest and jail time.

Hampson's bizarre ritual involves standing silently in the middle of De La Beche Street, just yards from the Swansea Central police station, disrupting traffic and confounding authorities. He has been arrested numerous times but maintains an eerie, impenetrable silence throughout his ordeals.

Despite spending over three years in prison for endangering lives and breaching court orders, the 51-year-old returned to his notorious spot in December 2021, only to be detained once more under the Mental Health Act.

The British court has labeled Hampson "Mute by Malice," (great band name) suggesting his silence is deliberate rather than a result of an inability to speak. Psychiatric evaluations have been inconclusive, as Hampson refuses to engage with doctors. The judge believes social stresses may play a role in his behavior but also notes a degree of insolence and arrogance in his actions. Prison officers testified that Hampson had spoken to them while he was an inmate, indicating he has the ability to speak.

The Daily Star reports that Hampson' s brother considers him a "spoiled brat" who goes to prison on purpose for the free meals. "He's not really mute. He never stops talking. It is quite simple really. He's a spoiled brat," he said.

Previously: Are you ready for four-color traffic lights?