Woman Mauled To Death By Her Pet Pit Bulls While Walking In The Woods

A Virginia woman has died after her two pet pit bulls mauled her to death while out for a walk.

Bethany Lynn Stephens’ body was discovered in Goochland, Virginia Thursday night, dead from an apparent mauling by the two dogs she was walking. The dogs were found near her body by police.

Sheriff James L. Agnew told local news: “(Her body) was being guarded by two very large, brindle-colored pit bull dogs.” The dogs belonged to Stephens, and are now suspected to have been bred for fighting.

Stephens grew up in the Goochland area and frequently walked her dogs in the woods near her family farm.

An autopsy was performed, and the medical examiner found her body to be “consistent with being mauled by these dogs.” Defensive wounds were found on her hands and arms, and the examiner believed her to be alive when the dogs attacked.

“The first traumatic injury to her was to her throat and face,” the autopsy read. “It appears she was taken to the ground, lost consciousness, and the dogs then mauled her to death.”

Authorities say they have not found any evidence of foul play.

“It was an absolutely grisly mauling. In my nearly 40 years in law enforcement, I’ve never seen anything quite like it,” Sheriff Agnew said of the wooded area where Stephens’ body was found. “I hope I never see anything like it again.”

Authorities went looking for Stephens after her father called to report that he hadn’t seen her daughter in a 24 hour period and was concerned for her safety. He then went looking for her, and found her corpse along with her two pit bulls, who were aggressively guarding her body.

Police were eventually forced to contact animal control after spending hours attempting to wrangle them away from Stephens’ body. Animal control used tranquilizers to calm the dogs, which weighed close to 125 pounds each, and then take them away so the scene could be examined.

What investigators found was a gruesome spectacle of blood and clothing. Authorities located 60 separate pieces of evidence, requiring eight hours on the scene.

Police are now seeking to have the dogs euthanized.

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