Police say a 66-year-old woman was killed on Christmas Eve after she and her husband were “savagely attacked” by two pit bulls in Kentucky.
On Sunday morning, two officers in Bell County responded to a call from a man who said his brother and sister-in-law had been attacked by their neighbor’s dogs. The deputies found the woman dead and the husband suffering from serious injuries, according to the New York Post.
The husband was reportedly able to shoot and kill one of the dogs. He injured the second, but the animal got away, according to a statement from the Bell County Sheriff’s Office.
“The husband suffered wounds as well, but was able to shoot both dogs, killing one while the other ran off.”
The second dog was eventually captured and put down later that afternoon, LEX 18 reports.
The woman killed in the attack was identified at 66-year-old Lorraine Brock Saylor.
Her husband, Johnny Saylor, awoke that morning and couldn’t find his wife, who usually woke up before he did according to the department’s statement. When he went out onto his front porch to search for her, he was attacked by both pit bulls. His brother was inside the home and heard the commotion outside so he came out and started yelling at the dogs, who then released Johnny.
Johnny went back into the home and grabbed a pistol then returned outside where he was attacked again. As one of the pit bull’s lunged at him, he shot the animal in the chest and it ran away.
Johnny then found his wife lying on the ground in the front of their home. At that time, he saw the second pit bull and shot it in fear of his life.
Lorraine was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police found that the dogs belonged to Johnny Dale Lankford, 42, who was already detained in the Bell County Detention Center on assault and domestic violence charges. He has since been charged with harboring a vicious animal.
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