Dogs Maul Their Owner to Death

Dogs Maul Their Owner to Death

The death of a 22-year-old woman from Virginia after being attacked by her own dogs has sparked a debate over the "grisly mauling" incident - that local County Sheriff described as something "never seen" before.

The Washington Post reports it was Stephens' father who found her after she had been missing for about a day since she left to walk her dogs and went looking for her in the woods.

"There were various articles of clothing, underclothing scattered about the area not far from the body and torn into small pieces, there were patches of blood", Goochland County Sheriff James Agnew shared from the preliminary report.

While Bethany was found with defensive wounds on her hands and arms, she also had puncture wounds to the skull and had wounds on her throat throat and face.

When deputies found her body, they said she had suffered "severe trauma" and was being guarded by the two dogs. Friends and family tell NBC News 12 they don't believe Stephens was killed by her dogs.

The medical examiner says the attack appeared to be a violent attack initiated by the dogs while out for a walk. And while Norris said she did not know the details of Stephens' death, "I know those dogs didn't do it".

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The dogs are with Goochland Animal Control and the sheriff's office will demand they are destroyed.

Friends said Ms Stephens had received death threats before the tragedy, which was another reason why they questioned whether the dogs were to blame, WRIC reported. Was it actually something else that attacked the owner? According to Barbara, the two brindle-colored dogs even slept with Bethany in her bed.

He spotted her but thought she was only hurt. "You have specific sub-populations that have been used over time in the illegal pursuit of dogfighting, but they really can't be held up as the standard for all pit bulls in America".

He added: "It was an absolutely grisly mauling".

Stephens was a petite woman, 5-foot-and weighing little more than 100 pounds; the dogs are said to have a combined weight of double that.

Meanwhile, the sheriff's office is working to have the dogs euthanized. "In my almost 40 years in law enforcement, I've never seen anything quite like it", he said. "I wasn't able to see the body, so I can't tell you what happened".

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