More details on man’s body found surrounded by 6 stray dogs in West Jefferson Co.

Body found surrounded by dogs
Published: Feb. 28, 2023 at 10:27 PM CST
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JEFFERSON CO., Ala. (WBRC) - WBRC is learning more about the man’s body found in West Jefferson County. The Sheriff’s Department said it is an “older man”, but his identity has not been released yet.

He was found dead around 6:30 a.m. by a passerby, with six large dogs surrounding his body.

“The dogs were surrounding the body and not allowing us to be able to get in there and do our investigation,” Lt. Joni Money with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department said. “We had to call the humane society to come in and trap the dogs.”

Lt. Money said they are investigating the death and the dog’s involvement.

“They seem to be in a pack type mentality,” Lt. Money said. “It is apparently a pack of strays. We are waiting on the cause of death to know if we are looking at the possibility of a murder, looking at the possibility of being struck by a vehicle, or even the possibility that the animals even mauled the victim to death. That is all under consideration, we are just waiting for the coroner’s report.”

The body was found on Iceland Avenue and Utica Place, right near a large cemetery, a neighborhood, and a hot spot for illegally dumped trash.

“People will dump animals,” Lt. Money said. “Say they had an unwanted liter, they’ll dump those animals in areas like that, and they’ll just allow them to run free. Then, they’ll pack together and look after each other. It’s kind of like a pack of wolves or coyotes. They learn to survive.”

It took animal control around one hour to trap the dogs.

“It does appear that the dogs may have been involved,” Money said. “We don’t know they were involved in a death. We will definitely be talking to the neighbors to see if they heard anything, saw anything, anything to help us determine what happened to this man.”

The coroner’s office said the autopsy and cause of death results aren’t in yet, but they should be released sometime on March 1.

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