Woman Killed by Pack of Dogs That Allegedly Escaped From Neighbor's Yard

The family of a woman killed by a pack of "vicious" dogs last month has launched legal action in the county in an attempt to get justice.

Relatives of the victim, identified as Deann Stephenson, said she was rushed to hospital after being attacked by four dogs while walking to a corner store in the community of Porter in Texas at around midday on February 15, KPRC-TV first reported.

The pack of canines seemingly escaped from a neighbor's front yard before mauling the woman, who died at Montgomery County's Kingwood Hospital.

Stephenson and her family, including her disabled husband Bruce Clark and son Keaton Clark, had moved into the Porter area about a year prior. The full extent of the woman's injuries and the dog breeds involved in the fatal attack were not immediately clear.

KPRC-TV reported the family has hired a local attorney called Patrick O'Hara who has previously represented dog attack victims in the county.

"No criminal charges have been filed against the dog owner. This is horrific, these dogs should have been put down years ago and I believe that blood is on the hands of Montgomery County," O'Hara told KPRC-TV in a segment aired on March 1.

O'Hara, who said he has conducted interviews with the victim's neighbors, claimed the same dogs previously attacked other residents in the community, including a child. He said a lawsuit would be filed this week, without confirming the defendant.

Relatives said the owners of the dogs—who were not publicly named—shared some of the blame for the fatal attack. "I believe my mom deserves justice. She always took care of me. I think she would want me to fight for her," Keaton Clark told KPRC-TV.

Montgomery County Sheriff's Office has been contacted for comment by Newsweek. It was not immediately clear if the case was being considered a criminal matter.

A GoFundMe crowdfunding campaign created on February 20 by Holly Jorgensen, the victim's sister, has since raised $3,310, exceeding its initial target of $3,000.

Jorgensen wrote in a description on the page: "Deann Stephenson was my sweet sister, who was taken from this world way too soon. She was attacked by a pack of vicious dogs and was rushed to the ER, but unfortunately passed away at the hospital."

She said funds raised from donors would be used to pay for Stephenson's funeral and memorial service, and any outstanding money would be given to the family.

Last month, a 33-year-old Alabama man was rushed to hospital in critical condition after being mauled by dogs outside his home in Mobile County. He suffered wounds across his entire body and will require reconstructive surgeries, his family members said.

Stock: Pack of dogs barking ferociously
Stock image: Pack of dogs barking ferociously. Not the dogs involved in the attack. The family of a woman killed by “a pack of vicious dogs” last month has launched legal action in the county in an attempt to get justice. iStock