Family Suspects Foul Play, Their Dog ‘Darby’ Found Dead on Porch

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NEWAYGO COUNTY, Mich. (April, 4, 2014) — A family in Grant said that their 19-month-old American Bulldog named Darby was intentionally killed, and want the person responsible to be arrested.

Nora Jacobson said that her family got their dog Darby when she was only eight-weeks-old.

On Wednesday, Jacobson said that Darby went missing.


‘Darby,’ found dead on Newaygo County porch this week

While she was at school, she said that she got a call from a friend letting her know Darby had been found laying on their back patio, and not moving.

“They let me know Darby was on our back patio, and it looked like she was dead,” said Jacobson.

Jacobson said that she raced home as fast as she could.

“I started searching her body to see if she had been hit by a car and I had to pull her out and there was a puddle of blood from where her head was laying.”

Jacobson called police, and a veterinarian conducted an autopsy which concluded it’s “unlikely” the dog died as a result of being hit by a car.

Jacobson said even if her dog was hit by a car and tried to walk home before dying, there would have been a trail of blood.

The family believes someone killed their dog and returned her body.

Jacobson said Darby was the perfect family pet, and great with her three small children.

Jacobson also said there have been issues with people in the neighborhood, and threats against their dog’s life had been made in the past.

The family has a trail cam, and after checking it to see if it captured any footage of somebody returning the dog, they said they discovered the memory card was missing.

“I just lost a member of my family. It’s murder. I want them to pay. I want them to be held accountable,” said Jacobson.

Michigan State Police said Friday evening that their investigation is ongoing.







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  • Nancy

    My heart goes out to Darby's family. I hope and pray that the person responsible for Darby's death is caught and charged!

  • Esco

    Definitely seems like a personal act that was done out of hate. The missing memory card is curious too. I'd be on high alert for a while just in case. I hate those that hurt and kill animals just to do it.

  • Consequences

    When I was young, I caught a "man" abusing a cat.
    I'd guess that to this day he still regrets running into me-

    That's what it takes, " attitude adjustment"

  • Sarah

    How very sad. I hope this will help impress upon people the importance of keeping your animal within a fence or on a leash when outside. Sounds like if the animal was able to "run freely" in the yard, it may have been leaving the yard and possibly causing a problem for other neighbors. Dogs don't only get hit by cars when allowed to run freely.

  • KENR


  • Leona Gaff

    What was the cause and manner of death? I am not clear what actually happened to the dog but something smells about this and it isn't the poor dog. ~~~Leona~~~

  • Scherzerfan

    I care about animals more than I do most people. But this sounds like another "Keep your dog on a leash" story. She had issues with neighbors in the past. There is nothing in the story about the dog being contained to it's own yard other than where she found it. Poor dog, this makes me sick. I would definitely be very, very concerned about the card missing from the cam. Now that someone knows they can get away with coming and going, I'd be taking some aggressive steps for protection.

      • Scherzerfan

        I'm not looking for fans. I'm saying that because there are so many Uncle Toms out there, people need to be more careful in taking care of their pets. I would be crushed if that was my dog. I personally could never hurt an animal. And no, I am not a fan of you either. Troller.

  • UncleTom

    TAKE SOME RESPONSIBILITY DOG OWNER and Keep YOUR fucking dog on YOUR property and you probably wouldn't have had a problem. Not everyone in your neighborhood is as in love with your dog as you are. I for one am not.

    • Private

      Sounds like you just “outed” yourself by insinuating you know the area of where this occurred-Really though? Its someones pet!
      What a disturbed individual you must be if the mere presence of someones dog on “Your Property” bothers you!

    • Cindy

      If you really are aware of this situation, as you imply, you should come forward and tell what happened. A debt is owed to this family, and to this loved, (but not by you), dog/family member. The way this dog was so viciously and cruelly slaughtered shows someone who is very angry. You'd be doing a service by coming forward with what you know, even if that person is yourself, and getting it out in the open. There is help available. I'm praying for you. Do the right thing.

    • Esco

      Take responsibility for YOUR OWN emotions and actions, a dog cannot reason like a human (should). If you feel the desire to kill anything that annoys you perhaps you may be a tad bit dangerous. I certainly hope the same won't happen to a kid that chases a ball onto your property.

    • ConcernedCitizen

      UncleTom, its pretty sad that u are even allowed to own dogs!! Oh n way to make it so obvious that u are the one that did this to a familys pet! U are obviously a freaking nutbag creeper harrassing people in ur neighborhood!! Dont worry this will be solved and u will look like the complete creeper that u are!!

  • Guest

    I am so sorry this happened to this poor dog. It's so tragic. This story says the woman wants the person arrested, and I'd start with her for letting the dog run loose. Aren't there laws against that?

    • Rose

      Wtf? Are you serious, you would start with her? You dont seem to get it, do you, your fake words of sorry, lack remorse, someone murdered her dog, trespassed, to return the dogs body back, and STOLE the memory card, and its her fault? Another Uncle Tom, in the world..

  • another neighbor

    I do live in this neighborhood and the “neighbor” there have been issues with is not even truly a neighbor. He lives on a seperate street and this is not the only family bothered by him. The man is creepy. We have even had neighbors move due to his odd behavior. I have encountered this pup as well and never witnessed aggressive behavior. If any of you can say you are the perfect dog owner and your dog has NEVER run off you are a liar and I pray for your souls.

    • Sarah

      Did you encounter this dog off a leash and outside of the owners yard? If so the dog was running free illegally. Whomever was annoyed by this dog should have done the right thing and contained it until animal control could take it in and inform the owners. But letting your dog run loose is wrong. I have personally been on the wrong side of the law in this and since then I have been a strict advocate of chaining or fencing your pet. Other people do not want your pet in their yard. Also dogs can travel quite a ways, if this "neighbor" does just live on a separate street, that doesn't make him any less subject to the dogs roaming.

  • Nora

    I have not claimed to be a perfect dog owner.. yes Darby has gotten loose. It still gives noone the right to kill her the way they did.. if you honestly felt in danger why would you get close enough to bash her skull? I have had other neighbors dogs in my yard numerous times and have NEVER harmed them.. I have not had issues with neighbors.. just ONE and he knows who he is and the truth to why those issues arose.

  • Nora

    “Uncle Tom” I am sorry you were not a fan of our dog, and that is your right. I’m sure not everyone is a fan of every member of your family however that does not give them the right to harm them. Not to mention your problem with my dog is ONLY when you walk YOUR AGGRESSIVE one passed my home.. please just leave us alone.

    • Sarah

      Does "Uncle Tom" walk is AGGRESSIVE dog past your home on a leash on the PUBLIC sidewalk? If so he is within his rights and you are not. Maybe he is just another LAW-ABIDING dog owner who dislikes others who disregard public dog ownership regulations.

  • Nora

    Actually no. We have many photos of “Uncle Tom” allowing his dog to walk freely unleashed with the leash in his hand but not connected to the dog, as well as allowing his dog in our yard as well as numerous photos of the taunting and harassment we’ve endured. Our dog has only ran up to him while walking passed and he has threatened to “take her home, kill her & drop her back off”

  • another neighbor

    What is wrong with some of you people? DOGS GETS LOOSE this gives noone the right to just kill them, especially out of spite! Uncle Tom is not very inconspicuous considering the “neighbor” with the problems name is Tom. And why don’t we ask him how he felt just recently when his dog was hit by a car due to running free, after enduring that pain as a “true animal lover” how could you inflict it upon someone else?

  • Gary

    Can you read Sarah? His dog was running loooooose and got hit by a CAR! SO KEEP TALKING ABOUT SOMETHING YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT….. I D I O T !

    • Sarah

      I simply asked if he walked his dog by their house on a leash or not. If not then he is just as in the wrong. If this man already had a dog hit and killed by a car while off leash and does not keep his dog contained after that his is a fool. I am talking about something I know about Gary, there are plenty of dogs who run free in my neighborhood as well and while I do not condone catching and killing them, I believe these dog owners who allow this are bad pet owners. Also Gary, I never suggested people should keep their dogs on chains constantly, this is also very upsetting to see. But when your dog needs to go out it should be chained unless you have a fence. I'm sorry you disagree with me and animal control. Finally Gary, I obviously can read and am not an idiot. Please control your anger issues.

  • Rose

    Jesus Kern, there were so many "maybe's" in your comment, Id almost think you were guessing, then blaming the family, because "maybe" must mean the truth, and WHY wouldnt this be important? Its important to the family, that had their family pet, murdered, their property trepassed on, so they could taunt the family, or threaten them, by returning the body, hmmm, and you dont think thats news? Well move the fuck on then, funny, you still made time to comment, sure sounds, like there are more Tom's out there, then not, watch your furry family members nonTom's, not safe out in the world of Tom's..

  • Rose

    I dont know about your yard, but ours is a mess and much mud, from crappy Michigan weather, were there any prints, they have any leads? Fingerprints on the cam? For the pos, to go that far, and bring Darbys body back, I would take that as a threat, this person is dangerous, he may have been taunting you, this ind, has some issues, that should not be taken lightly…I dont care what anyone says, thinks or believes, that person has some serious personal problems, with someone in your home, to take such a risk, be careful…

  • Nora

    You’re very right Rose, this person does have a personal problem with members of my family.. we are being very careful.. thank you for your support & concern. Sarah, Gary took the comments personal because he is my husband, and does have some pent up anger regarding this situationand the harassment/taunting we have endured. Luckily for our family he understands that we need him more instead of taking matters into his own hands which this man has been trying to provoke since their innitial confrontation…

    • Monoxide

      Are the police still involved in this case? Sounds like this person of interest isn't going to let up. Perhaps a restraining order should be considered here.