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Bethany Lynn Stephens has been named as the Virginia woman found dead in a wooded area after being mauled to by her two dogs, according to the Goochland Sheriff’s Office.
Stephens, 22, was discovered just after 8:15 p.m. Thursday in a remote area in the 2200 block of Manakin Road in Goochland County.
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The woman’s father called 911 saying he hadn’t seen his daughter in nearly two days. He went to look for her where she frequently walked her dogs in the woods.
He spotted her but thought she was simply hurt. Authorities stumbled upon a more grave discovery.
Deputies say they found the dogs guarding the woman’s body when they arrived.
“The female had suffered severe trauma and was being guarded, for lack of a better word, by two very large, brindle colored pitbull dogs who were very reluctant to be caught,” said Sheriff Jim Agnew.
It took authorities more than an hour to catch the dogs.
The sheriff says they were huge and trained to fight. Now, he’s preparing to have them euthanized.
“They were big, strong, powerful dogs,” Sheriff Agnew said.
The medical examiner says the attack appeared to be a violent attack initiated by the dogs while out for a walk.
“It was an absolutely grisly mauling,” Sheriff Agnew said.
He says the dogs had forced her to the ground, and she became unconscious before she was killed.
It appears the first traumatic injury was to her throat and face. She also had puncture wounds to her skull.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends at this difficult time.
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