Elderly man found murdered in Santa Monica home

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A murder investigation is underway after an elderly man was found dead inside his Santa Monica home. (KABC)

The search is on for a killer after an elderly man was found dead inside his Santa Monica home.

Friends say 88-year-old John Hautz lived on 34th Street for 25 years.

"It's a very upsetting time right now to lose John to such a cruel and violent way," said Wanda, a neighbor.

A neighbor called police on New Year's Day around 1 p.m., saying Hautz appeared to be unconscious inside his home, located in the 2300 block of 34th Street.

When officers arrived, they found evidence indicating he was murdered.

"We can tell you that his body suffered some traumatic injuries that would be consistent with the cause of his death," said Lt. Saul Rodriguez with Santa Monica police.

Hautz has no known family members in the country, but people who knew him say the neighborhood won't be the same without him.

Hautz, a native of Germany, took daily walks. Neighbors said the former ski instructor used crutches because of an old injury.

"Everybody knew him. He was commonly seen walking up and down the street trying to get some exercise, loved hanging out in the sun," said Brad Edwards, an area resident.

If you have any information about this case, you're urged to call the Santa Monica Police Department at (310) 458-8449 or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.

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elderlymurderSanta MonicaLos Angeles County
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