Experts said the killing of a young woman by her dogs in rural Goochland County last week may have resulted from misdirected aggression and unlikely had anything to do with them being pit bulls. It was her father John Stephens who found her body two days later near her Goochland, Virginia house along with her two pets. "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 Sheriff James Agnew told local Fox affiliate.
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. According to a Medical Examiner's report, Stephens was mauled to death by her two pit bull dogs. Agnew noted that Stephens' death was not a homicide and that there were no strangulation marks on her body.
However, Barbara Norris, a friend of Stephens, doesn't believe the two dogs would do anything to hurt her.
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. If this is truly the case, how could these loving pit bulls have attacked their owner so viciously?
They were tranquilised at the scene and removed by animal control. "Were there stray dogs, coyotes [or] something else in the woods", she said.More news: Community stepping up to aid Salvation Army after fire
The veterinarian's thoughts were echoed by a certified dog trainer as well, who suggested that "to go from a lovable no-bite history dog to one that is causing harm would be fairly rare".
"They'd kill you with kisses". "In my almost 40 years in law enforcement, I've never seen anything quite like it", he said.
Agnew said the dogs belonged to Stephens and suspected that they had been bred to fight, according to the report.
"They were big, strong, powerful dogs", Sheriff Agnew said. He estimated that each dog weighed about as much as Stephens - she was 5-foot-1 and weighed 125 pounds.
The dogs are now held at Goochland Animal Control and the Sheriff's Office said it is seeking to have them both euthanized. "I hope I never see anything like it again", Agnew said.