A man is facing charges after Hernando County deputies conducting a well-being check in Spring Hill discovered one man killed and another hanging from a tree.
Dustin McMillan, 33, faces one charge of first-degree murder and one charge of tampering with evidence after deputies say he helped Dakota Lee Croft kill William Scott Trudell before Croft killed himself.
According to a news release from the sheriff’s office, deputies were called to conduct a well-being check at a home on Elkin Avenue in Spring Hill just before 7 p.m. Monday. A family member had called 911 to report that Croft had possibly killed Trudell.
When deputies arrived, McMillan initially locked the front door and prevented them from entering the home, the news release states. Eventually, McMillan allowed deputies inside but indicated Croft was not home, the news release states.
Another deputy who walked to the backyard found Croft dead and hanging from a tree, according to the news release.
In a search of the surrounding area, deputies found Trudell’s body lying on the ground in a nearby wooded lot. They found drag marks from the side garage door at the home to where Trudell’s body was located.
McMillan told deputies that he and Croft had been drinking earlier in the day, and they devised a plan to attack Trudell. Croft was upset with Trudell for being a “Cop Caller” and “disrespecting women in the home,” McMillan told deputies.
When Trudell entered the garage, McMillan told deputies, he and Croft “ambushed him and killed him.” The news release does not say how Trudell was killed.
A short time later, a family member entered the garage and saw Trudell’s body on the floor before immediately leaving the home, the news release states.
McMillan told deputies that he and Croft dragged Trudell’s body to a nearby wooded area and began to clean up the garage and dispose of evidence. Detectives believe it was shortly after both men attempted to clean up the garage that Croft then hanged himself, the news release states.
At the time of his death, Croft was under the supervision of the Florida Department of Corrections and had recently cut off his ankle monitor, which was found in the backyard, the news release states.
McMillan was taken to the Hernando County Detention Center, where he was being held without bond Tuesday.
Anyone with information can call Hernando County Crime Stoppers at 1-866-990-8477 or **TIPS from a cellphone. You may also submit your tip online at http://www.hernandocountycrimestoppers.com.