Owner of pig attacked in Effingham County speaks out - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Owner of pig attacked in Effingham County speaks out

Joe Oliver Joe Oliver
Benjamin Fullwood (Source: Effingham County Sheriff's Office) Benjamin Fullwood (Source: Effingham County Sheriff's Office)
Oliver Oliver

A man went hog wild on a pet pig and now he's paying the price. Meanwhile, the four year-old pig, named Oliver by veterinarians, is recovering from more than 20 two-inch stab wounds and dog bites marks on his neck, ears and back of his legs.

The attack, as first reported on WTOC Thursday night, was all caught on video.

Oliver's owner saw the video, like thousands online, and was in shock.

"It's unbelievable That's the first time I've ever seen anything like that in my life and I'm 78 years old," Joe Oliver told WTOC.

Oliver spoke to WTOC with a room full of people watching his hog, now named Oliver, stuck healing in vet office crate, at a loss for words.  He said he has a property full of animals, all tame, a personal petting zoo of miniature horses and ponies, llamas, hogs and pigs.

Wednesday morning, after Oliver and another hog kept fighting, he separated the two. He says Oliver somehow snuck out under his new pen, and wandered into the nearby mobile home park across the street.

The last two people two see him before the attack were also in the vet's room. They remembered finding him after the attack, but at the time, weren't sure exactly what had happened when they saw 23 year-old Ben Fullwood and his dogs with a bloody and injured Oliver.

"I ran up and got the pig away from the dogs and away from him where he could be protected," Kelly Johnson said.

They said Fullwood's reaction was disgusting. "He started laughing. He thought it was funny," Jessica Johnson said.

Jessica and Kelly Johnson went to school and grew up with Fullwood.

"He's nothing but a trouble maker," Kelly Johnson said.

Fullwood already has a history of arrests for arson, obstruction and abandoning dogs and cats left in a cage with nothing but their own filth.

In this case involving attacking a pig unprovoked, stabbing it and ordering his dogs to attack while children and others watched, laughing was bad enough. What Fullwood did next, the Johnsons say was even more repulsive. 

"He wanted us to pay him for the hog," Jessica Johnson said. "He wanted us to pay him. Yes sir. He said he butchered it. He wanted a hundred dollars for the meat."

Fullwood wasn't much of a butcher. Oliver is alive and well today, thanks to quick acting neighbors, his owner, and Webb Animal Hospital's staff and Dr. Aniko Tacaks.

"Hogs are pretty resilient. They tend to withstand a lot of trauma," Tacaks said.

She says the hog suffered puncture wounds on the back of his legs, causing possibly permanent nerve damage. The physical wounds, even for an animal, may not compare to the emotional damage. He's still a little skittish.

After watching the attack on video, Dr. Tacaks had a hard time finding words to express her feelings on the senseless violence.

"I didn't realize there were people out there like that. I think after the sadness, there was outrage," she said.

The Johnsons didn't realize Fullwood was the reason Oliver was a bloody mess until after they had left the scene.

"He probably would have knocked him out," Jessica said of her husband's possible actions if he knew what had really happened before they arrived on the scene when they heard Oliver's squealing.

"I'd probably be in jail with him," Kelly Johnson sad. 

Joe Oliver is over the violence. He just wants Oliver back home.

"I'm alive on account of a hog. I have a pig valve in my heart, so I'm kind of partial to him," he said.

Oliver will head back home from Webb Animal Hospital Saturday morning.

Ben Fullwood will remain in jail on $25,000 bond set by a judge Friday morning. He's charged with aggravated cruelty to animals ( felony ), obstruction of a law enforcement officer, and criminal trespass. Fullwood remains in the Effingham County jail. 

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