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Police: Hammer Could Have Killed Muretta

A Williams Township man whose death has been deemed suspicious may have been killed by a hammer.

A in his home last week may have been killed by a hammer.

That's according to a search warrant application filed by state police and released Tuesday by .

The document lists new details in the case of 47-year-old Michael Muretta, who was pronounced dead last week at St. Luke's Hospital after being found by state troopers at his Morgan Hill Road home Aug. 29.

Authorities have called the death suspicious, but the coroner has not ruled on Muretta's cause of death.

According to the search warrant application, police were called last week by Muretta's ex-wife, Teresa, who became concerned because he had missed more than a week of work "which is highly unusual."

Troopers found the home locked, and forced their way in when no one responded. Inside, they found Muretta, who had "a significant amount" of blood on his body.

"Muretta was discovered to be alive, but he was unable to communicate with the troopers," the application says.

Police found more blood in a basement utility room. Muretta was taken to the hospital, where he later died of his injuries. According to police, deputy Coroner Rick Pender said that circular abrasions on Muretta's face and head may have been caused by a hammer.

The search warrant says police were looking for "potential weapons used to inflict injuries," as well as communication devices, GPS, letters, bills, mail, and trace evidence such as blood, hair and fibers.

Funeral services for Muretta were scheduled for Wednesday in Phillipsburg, according to his obituary. He worked as a union electrician with IBEW Local 102, and graduated from Phillipsburg High School.

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