Woman Found Dead After Her Own Dogs Maul Her While on a Walk
22 December, 2017, 01:13
Authorities in the U.S. state of Virginia have said a 22-year-old woman was mauled to death by her two dogs while out on a walk last week amid rumours that someone else killed her, reports have said.
Goochland County Sheriff Jim Agnew described Stephens as "petite, ' and said the dogs were between 100-120 pounds".
Later officials would release photos and details of the grisly discovery.
"Let me cut right to the chase, the most important detail that we did not release because we were anxious about the well-being of the family is that the in the course of trying to capture the dogs early Friday morning.we turned and looked..."
"I observed, as well as four other deputy sheriffs observed", Agnew said, then paused before continuing, "the dogs eating the rib cage on the body".
He said they made the decision to capture them instead of shoot them.
According to detectives, for the past couple of months, the two dogs spent most of their time cooped up in a kennel outside of the home of the victim's father in Goochland County.
Bethany's dad called the emergency services at 8pm on Thursday after she hadn't returned from walking the dogs. The examiner said this proves she was alive when she was attacked.
However, police are still investigating and are carrying out forensic tests.
He again referenced the bloody scene that law enforcement discovered, and deferred to the expertise of the medical examiner. Had she been attacked by a bigger animal, such as a bear, Agnew said, the bites would've punctured her skull. "There were also scratch marks consistent with a smaller animal than something like a bear".
The dogs are being held at Goochland County Animal Control.
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The sheriff added that both animals were still attacking the deceased victim when the officers arrived on scene.
Agnew refuted rumors that the pit bulls had been used for fighting and said that while rare, such attacks on owners weren't unheard of.
He offered background and said the dogs were a "little bit neglected towards the end of this".
When deputies found her body, they said she had suffered "severe trauma" and was being guarded by the two dogs. It became a question of whether to kill the dogs or try to capture them. When they turned back around, they saw that the dogs had walked over to the body.
"It appears she was taken to the ground, lost consciousness and the dogs mauled her to death", Agnew told reporters. Family gave permission. Presser at 4pm. The dogs were later euthanized.
The toxicology report on Stephens will be complete in about 90 days.
"I think it was in the best interest of our community and for public safety to do that", Agnew said. "Once a dog tastes human flesh it is not safe to have that dog around humans".
"They'd kill you with kisses".
"The narrative that I was hearing from so many, particularly on social media, was so far off the mark", Sheriff James Agnew said at a news conference on Tuesday.
Paul said the "huge" lifestyle change could have caused them to maul their owner. They are dealing with trying to piece everything together and filtering out the misinformation.
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The family's attorney John Tiemessen issued a statement regarding the incident, although the victim involved was not identified. Her son was arrested on charges of felony burglary, assault in the fourth degree and criminal mischief on Saturday.
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