Family says grandson loved the grandfather he killed with a hatchet

Thomas M. Snodgress Jr. is accused of murdering his grandfather with an ax. (Source: LMDC)
Thomas M. Snodgress Jr. is accused of murdering his grandfather with an ax. (Source: LMDC)
Updated: Aug. 1, 2019 at 8:43 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A Louisville man has been charged with killing his own grandfather with a hatchet in Fairdale.

The attack happened on the porch of the suspect’s home around 1 a.m. Thursday on Tex Avenue.

The family gave WAVE 3 News a handwritten letter wanting the public to know the suspect, Thomas Snodgress, was mentally ill.

The suspect’s father said he and his dad, Tony Snodgress Sr., went to his son’s home to get him help. That’s when he said the nightmare began.

The suspect’s father said he was screaming for help.

After a struggle, the suspect walked off. Police found him down the street a short time later, bloodied with the hatchet still in his hand.

Neighbors woke up to a crime scene.

“It seemed like something off a movie,” neighbor Jonathan Morales said.

Morales would often see Snodgress walking his dog.

“I know at that house, nothing goes on there,” another neighbor, Daisy Rodriguez, said.

“He seemed like a normal guy,” Morales told WAVE 3 News.

At one point, he may have been. In the letter his family wrote, “Our family, his wife, want everyone to know that wasn’t Thomas. That he was mentally ill, a fraction of him.”

The suspect’s father said Tony Sr. just had a birthday last week and that he lived for his grandkids and wanted to help.

“That’s why he was there,” they wrote.

The suspect later confessed to the killing, but his family is convinced he loved his grandfather.

A police report said the victim had “multiple wounds to the head consistent with being struck by a sharp bladed object.”

Snodgress was booked on a murder charges and is being held at Louisville Metro Corrections. He will be arraigned Friday morning.

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