Man faces additional charges after commanding dog to attack officers, police say

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Memphis man was arrested after police say he commanded his dog to attack officers as they tried to take him into custody.

According to police, Task Force officers along with the Shelby County Fugitive Apprehension Team went to Marquel Hill’s home in the 300 block of Hodges Cove on Wednesday. Their aim was to arrest Hill on 13 active warrants.

After entering the home, officers quickly realized that Hill had barricaded himself inside a back bedroom and refused to come out. Police said the suspect told officers to kill him before commanding his dog to attack. The dog obeyed and charged at officers, they said.

Officers were able to corral the animal into another room along with five other dogs. Police say they were living in horrifying conditions with no food or water. “I’ve never seen dogs at that house,” neighbor James Allen said.

Hill was eventually detained and charged with seven counts of aggravated assault.

Matt Womack with the Humane Society of Memphis and Shelby County says these are also the incidents that contribute to preconceived notions about pitbulls. “It’s a terrible thing when people use animals to do aggressive behaviors that could harm other people,” he said.

Police say the dogs eventually became aggressive, so animal control took them to a safer place.

No one was injured.

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