Dogs who mauled owner to death were eating her when deputies arrived

Dogs who mauled owner to death were eating her when deputies arrived

Dogs who mauled owner to death were eating her when deputies arrived

Sheriff's deputies who discovered a Virginia woman mauled by her pit bulls revealed more details on her death.

According to Daily Mail, Bethany's father John found his handsome blonde daughter's body in the woods two days after she'd gone missing.

"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 in the course of trying to capture the dogs early Friday morning...we turned and looked..."

The dogs were still with the woman's body when she was found, and the sheriff said Stevens suffered obvious serious injuries.

"There was no evidence of any larger animal there", Agnew said during a news conference Monday, in response to the widespread belief that perhaps Stephens was attacked by a wild animal. "The victim had defensive wounds on her hands and arms trying to keep the dogs away from her, which would be consistent with being attacked while she was still alive".

Stephens' friend, Barbara Norris, was not convinced by the authorities' account of her death, saying the dogs, which Stephens had been raising since they were puppies, would never turn on her, ABC affiliate WRIC reported.

The sheriff described the disturbing scene when authorities arrived to find the dogs still attacking Stephens on Thursday.

"The medical examiner...made it pretty clear that it was not a large animal because the bite wounds didn't puncture her skull", Agnew said.

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They were put down on Saturday with the family's permission. Nothing that said she was stabbed. "But. from the evidence that we observed, from the evidence that we collected, that narrative doesn't fit". There was no particular bleeding inside the oesophagus, which would've been conducive with choking her out. "None of that", Whitlock told reporters.

The sheriff also put to rest the rumor that Stephens' dogs were used for fighting or that Stephens was sexually assaulted. It became a question of whether to kill the dogs or try to capture them.

Everyone has said the dogs were socialized, passive and had a significant bond with Stephens.

"We spent a lot of time there at the scene and made some observations that, out of respect for the family, we're not releasing", Agnew said.

"I don't think there's any way we can definitively say what caused the attack", Agnew said, according to the Times-Dispatch.

Reports suggest that at the time of her death, the dogs had been living with Bethany's father, John, who'd left the dogs outside. They are dealing with trying to piece everything together and filtering out the misinformation. A toxicology report is being run on Stephens and is expected to be completed in about three months.

"I think it was in the best interest of our community and for public safety to do that", Agnew said.

Sheriff Agnew said once that takes place it will be about two weeks before results are available and there could potentially be more answers as to what may have happened. "Once a dog tastes human flesh, it's no longer safe to have that dog around humans".

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