Hartselle assault leaves victim in coma, Altoona man arrested

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Photo courtesy Morgan County Sheriff’s Office

MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. – The Morgan County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) said one man is in a coma after being assaulted while mowing a yard on Saturday, October 9.

Austin David Ray Wiley, 27. of Altoona, was arrested in connection to the attack and was charged with second-degree aggravated assault.

Morgan County Sheriff Deputies Sharbutt and Mukaddam responded to a disturbance call to the 50 block of Terry Road in unincorporated Hartselle.

When deputies arrived, they found one man bleeding from his head, who was conscious but unresponsive.

Deputies learned the victim was mowing a yard when a verbal argument turned physical, with the suspect stomping on the victim’s head several times. The victim was treated and taken to Huntsville Hospital in critical condition. He suffered multiple skull fractures with possible brain damage, a broken jaw, and a partially torn-off ear.

Investigator Dickson arrived on scene, and shortly after the suspect’s identity was discovered. A “Be-On-The-Lookout” was issued for the suspect and vehicle.

Wiley was found soon after and taken into custody. He was transported and booked into the Morgan County Jail with a $75,000 bond.

The victim remains in a coma in Huntsville Hospital. Authorities say additional charges are possible if the victim’s status changes.

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