A Pit Bull owner who pleaded guilty a year ago to using his Pit Bull terriers, Chocka and Girlie, to attack and wound a teenage boy and three men in three separate incidents has been found dead from a savage beating that police believe may be a revenge killing.
The body of Scott Hammond, 48, was found Monday night just before 10 p.m. on the living room floor of his home in Tahmoor, a village in the Sydney area of Australia, along with a paralyzed Pit Bull, the Herald Sun reports
Authorities state Hammond had been beaten to death and his head bashed in, which was determined as the cause of death. Officers discovered his body after a concerned friend contacted police to say he had not been seen for a few days, police told UPI.
On Tuesday at least two large dogs were removed from Hammond's home by police, who said it is hoped there might be DNA on the dogs to help identify the attackers.
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Hammond lived alone in a dilapidated home. and was reportedly well-known to police..
The wildlife rescue organization, called WIRES, was called in to remove a number of animals. "He had a bit of a variety of different wildlife," Acting Superintendent Danny Doherty told the Herald Sun.
Detectives are trying to establish the events leading up to his death and are still searching for a murder weapon. They are also trying to determine if the killer made illegal entry to the home before the assault began.
Detectives have not yet determined if the dogs tried to defend their owner, if they were injured during the murder; or if any forensic evidence, such as DNA, was transferred to the animals during the attack
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Described as well known to police and feared by many, Hammond had a number of brushes with the law, including ordering his dogs to attack last year, for which he received a seven-month suspended sentence, was ordered to pay $14,336 in fines and both Pit Bulls involved in the attack were euthanized. Hammond was also banned from owning a dog in the future.
Neighbors said Hammond had a habit of ordering his dogs to attack people. Danny Forrest, who owns a store in Tahmoor, said he was injured by one of Hammonds’ Pit Bulls.
"A lot of people didn't like him," Forrest told the Otago Daily Times. "I'll never forget the day he ordered his dogs to attack me. I told him to keep his dogs away from some children near my shop because they were scared. When I came out of the shop he just said to the dogs, 'Get him.”
Hammond's friends said he was an assault victim himself. An attack a couple of years ago was serious enough to put him in a wheelchair.
"Scottie had some demons but he did have a good heart," his friend Jason Briggs told reporters. "He loved animals and was loyal to his friends.”
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