Story Summary

Woman’s body found in yard

  • The body of a 30-year-old woman was found in the back yard of a home in Fallbrook.
  • Eight large dogs were roaming loose in the yard.
  • An autopsy confirmed that the woman was mauled to death by one or more of the dogs.
  • The dogs were impounded by the San Diego County Department of Animal Services.
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SAN DIEGO — A 30-year-old woman whose bloodied body found in the back yard of a home in Fallbrook died of injuries inflicted by one or more dogs, the San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office said Wednesday.

The woman, whose name has not been released, died of “multiple penetrating, mauling and blunt force injuries,” according to the medical examiner’s statement, which called the death an accident and listed no contributing conditions.

“We probably won’t know how many of the dogs were involved in the attack but the injuries sustained by the woman is what caused her death,” said San Diego Sheriff’s Lt. Glenn Giannantonio.

The woman had been hired to clean the house in the 1300 block of Calle Tecolotlan while the owners were out of town, according to the Medical Examiner’s Office. Her body was found Sunday at about 5:15 p.m. by a cousin who was checking on her welfare.

Several large dogs, identified by neighbors as English bulldogs, were on the property, Sheriff’s Sgt. Brian Jenkins said.

Eight dogs were impounded Sunday by the county Department of Animal Services and taken to a shelter, pending a decision on the cause of death and whether the dogs are determined to be dangerous enough to be euthanized.

“To have something like this happen, there are so many unanswered questions,” said Department of Animal Services spokesman Daniel Desousa.   “We don’t know what will happen to the dogs until our investigation is over.  Our ultimate goal is to ensure the public is safe and protected.”

Desousa said the dogs ranged between 4-months and 3-years-old.  He believes the dogs are an English-American bulldog mix.

While deputies were checking the residence for other possible victims, they found 24 marijuana plants growing in a rear bedroom. Investigators with the county Narcotics Task Force confiscated the plants are investigating the growing operation.

It was unclear if criminal charges might result from the death.

FALLBROOK, Calif. — Investigators Monday were trying to determine if a young woman was mauled to death by eight large dogs at the North County property where she was house-sitting.

The 30-year-old victim’s cousin made an emergency call about 5:15 p.m. Sunday to report finding her relative’s body while checking on her at the home in the 1300 block of Calle Tecolotan in Fallbrook, Sgt. Brian Jenkins said.

Deputies had to call animal-control officers to secure a group of dogs, described as “Olde English Bulldogges.” running loose in the yard.

The dead woman’s injuries were “consistent with” dog bites, Sgt. Victor Perry said. He added, however, that a cause-of-death ruling would remain on hold pending autopsy findings.

The victim had been house-sitting for the owners of the home while they were out of town, according to Jenkins. Her name was withheld pending family notification.

The county Animal Services Department impounded the dogs, agency spokesman Dan DeSousa said.

FALLBROOK, Calif. — An investigation was under way Monday into the death of a 30-year-old woman whose body was found in the back yard of a Fallbrook home along with several large dogs who had to be rounded up by animal control, authorities said.

Deputies were called to the home in the 1300 block of Calle Tecolotan just before 5:15 p.m. Sunday, according to San Diego County sheriff’s Sgt. Brian Jenkins.

A woman who identified herself as the victim’s cousin said she went to the home to check on her relative’s welfare and found the body, the sergeant said in a statement.

When deputies arrived, they had to call animal control officers to secure several large dogs running loose in the backyard, Jenkins said.

The county coroner’s office also was called to the home, according to Jenkins, who said the office determined there did not appear to be any criminal activity associated with the woman’s death.

The woman was house-sitting for the homeowners, who were out of town, he said.

Her name and city of residence were not immediately released.

The official cause of death and nature of death were under investigation.