West Virginia man brutally gouges out elderly neighbor's eyes with his thumbs and kills him over noisy rooster

Officials said that by looking at the victim’s body, it seemed the only serious injuries he suffered were to his eyes


                            West Virginia man brutally gouges out elderly neighbor's eyes with his thumbs and kills him over noisy rooster
Mercer County Sheriff’s Office

LASHMEET, WEST VIRGINIA: A man from Lashmeet, West Virginia, was arrested on Sunday, May 17, after he allegedly killed his neighbor by gouging his eyes out over a rooster. Richard Ellison allegedly killed Benny Foutch on Sunday. The 47-year-old accused also reportedly told investigators that Lucifer made him do the killing.

According to Mercer County Sheriff’s Department Detective-Corporal M. S. Horn, Ellison told his family and investigators that he murdered the 72-year-old because he was tired of hearing Foutch’s rooster. The accused also reportedly said that he walked up to the victim’s home Sunday afternoon on Reese Harmon Ridge Road. “He went up there and killed the rooster first and then he killed the deceased. He gouged out his eyes,” Horn said.

The investigation into the case began when Princeton Rescue Squad was called to a residence on Reese Harmon Ridge Road for an unrelated complaint and found the body of the victim outside his residence. Officials found the body of Foutch underneath a covered porch with "blood coming from his orbital sockets".

Horn also said that by looking at the victim’s body, it seemed the only serious injuries he suffered were to his eyes. “He had a prosthetic leg and he had cancer but he had injuries to his eyes. It looked like someone had gouged out his eyes. It was the only significant injuries we could observe,” Horn added.

The Detective-Corporal later interrogated Ellison, who “motions using his thumbs like up toward the eyes saying he killed him and that’s how he did it." Horn added that at one point in the interview, the accused even said that Lucifer made him do the murder. During the interrogation, Ellison confessed that he waited until Foutch died and then walked back to his home with the dead rooster. It has been said that there was a mental issue with the accused.

According to reports, Horn said after talking to Ellison, he believed the suspect knew what he was doing. “For him to know, ‘Hey, I need to wash my hands. Hey, I’m up here until I know he’s dead,’ that goes into a different category,” the officer stated.

Meanwhile, it has been reported that the state Medical Examiner’s Office will determine the cause of death of the old man. Ellison has been charged with second-degree murder and a preliminary hearing will be scheduled in Mercer County Magistrate Court.

In a similar incident in Kenya, a man allegedly killed his neighbor by hitting him with a blunt object on the head before gouging out his eyes. The incident happened in early April. After the alleged crime, the 32-year-old accused, whose identity was not revealed, tried to escape but was pursued by villagers, who arrested him and handed him over to the local police. At the time, the authorities said they were investigating the motive behind the murder and that the suspect will soon be charged.

In another incident, that happened in the Uttar Pradesh state of India, a man wearing a saint's robe was found with his eyes gouged out in an agricultural field in November 2019. Later, the man was identified as Krishna Kumar alias Lala and the autopsy report stated that the 40-year-old was strangled to death.

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