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Brett Smith was murdered by his neighbor William Perry who then cut off his head and burned it in an oven – Fear Thy Neighbor

Brett Smith was murdered by his neighbor William Perry
Brett Smith was murdered by his neighbor William Perry

Brett Smith and William Perry lived in trailer parked right next to each other and the pair often argued, eventually their disagreements turned deadly – Fear Thy Neighbor examines this gruesome case.

October 3, 2008, in North Canton, Ohio, and the dispute between neighbors Perry and Smith reached a deadly climax when Perry went to Smith’s trailer.

The pair got into a heated argument and Perry beat Smith and then strangled him to death. The most disturbing part of the case

Perry then decided to try and get rid of Smith’s body by dismembering it and burning certain parts. He cut off Smith’s head and then attempted to burn it in an oven. He also cut off Smith’s fingers and thumbs, before wrapping the remaining body in plastic and covering it in paint.

Smith’s body was found on the Monday after his worried mother and a neighbor broke into his home. She made a highly disturbing call to 911 telling the dispatcher: “I think my son has been killed. We just broke in and it looks like he’s in the bathroom but his head is missing.”

Later the medical examiner was able to identify the body through tattoos and police began investigating the shocking murder. Detectives also pieced together Smith’s last moments with neighbors saying that they saw Smith and Perry arguing.

Police also found various bits of evidence that pointed towards Perry, including a bracelet belonging to Smith that was found in his trailer.

In October, 2009, Perry made a plea deal in order to avoid the death penalty, pleading guilty to aggravated murder, gross abuse of a corpse and tampering with evidence.

He was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole.

Fear Thy Neighbor: Head in the Oven airs at 10:00 PM on Investigation Discovery.

James has worked for Monsters and Critics since it started back in 2003. He oversees the business and technical side of things. You can contact... read more
James Wray


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