The man's body was found in 'deplorable conditions,' a neighbor told CBS 5 News. (Photo courtesy of Christine Halstead)
WITTMANN, AZ (CBS5) -
A Wittmann man was found dead inside his home that was described by the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office as an animal hoarder's home.
Sheriff's deputies found the body of Jerry Brown, 78, in a bed inside the home. They said the 78-year-old man, who appeared to have been dead for several days, had been partially eaten by his pets.
No cause of death had been determined.
A neighbor called MCSO early Tuesday morning and said he hadn't seen Brown in about a week and that his neighbor's front door was open, Deputy Joaquin Enriquez said.
Bob Halstead told CBS 5 News his neighbor was last seen July 27, and when he went to check on him about 5 a.m. Tuesday, he found "deplorable conditions" at the home.
Several cats were seen on the property and cat feces, cages, empty boxes, empty cat food bags and other items littered the floors of the house. About 50 cats and some dogs were in the home, MCSO said.
Attempts to contact family members to remove the animals from the property were not successful, Enriquez said, and deputies were going to determine what animals could be taken by the sheriff's office MASH unit.
Enriquez said the sheriff's office has contacted the Arizona Humane Society and Maricopa County Animal Control for assistance.
But Halstead said he was told by Animal Control "we don't do cats, just dogs. So let them out of the house."
Halstead said he was concerned about disease the animals might transmit by running loose.
One of the cats that deputies found was a 4-month-old black kitten missing both eyes. They described the kitten as remarkably affectionate and trustworthy despite being blind.
Sheriff's deputies brought the kitten to the vet for examination. They named him "Homer," after the bestselling true story of Homer, the brave, blind cat.
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