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Husband of woman who died after pit bull attack says he wants justice

SPANAWAY — A Spanaway woman who was mauled by a pair of pit bulls last week has died — and her husband said he wants justice.

It appeared as though the 65-year-old woman was going to survive, but then suffered a fatal heart attack Tuesday at the hospital.

pitt bull victimThe attack happened at the intersection of 162nd Street and Pacific Avenue South Oct. 30. The woman was on her daily walk when out of nowhere two pit bulls attacked her from behind. The pit bulls were so violent it took several strangers to save her from their vicious grip.

“She was the kind of person everyone loved the minute they met her,” the victim’s husband, Chuck Woodhead, said Wednesday.

He added that the moment he met his wife, Nga, in Vietnam, it was love at first sight.

“She was walking down the beach, it was an instant attraction; I knew,” Woodhead said.

His wife died just a day shy of their 42nd wedding anniversary.

“It’s like a piece of your life is gone, a big chunk of your life is gone,” Woodhead said.

Nga was just hours from being released from the hospital Tuesday when she had a fatal heart attack.

“It was a bolt out of the blue,” Woodhead said.

The Pierce County Medical Examiner’s Office said the woman’s death was directly caused by the injuries she suffered from the pit bulls.

“They broke her arm and really tore her arm up,” Woodhead said.

The owner of the dogs was not home when Q13 FOX News stopped by Wednesday, but neighbors said the pit bulls somehow escaped a fenced yard last week and attacked Nga at the busy intersection. Now with her death, this case could turn into a criminal matter.

“This could change with the homeowner and dog owner who let these dogs out. We will be forwarding it to the prosecution’s office to let them decide what, if any, charges are filed,” Pierce County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Ed Troyer said.

“The owner should have known and should have been careful,” Woodhead said.

Despite his broken heart, Woodhead said the strangers who rushed to save his wife have left a lasting impression.

“It renewed my belief on mankind being good, basically being good,” Woodhead said.

It took three men to fight off the pit bulls. One man had to shoot one of the dogs who had a firm grip on Nga’s arm. The second pit bull was shot a short time later by a  deputy.

“They got bit, a couple of them; they did what they could. All I can say is thank you, that’s all I’ve got,” Woodhead said.

The Spanaway man said those men bought him one more week with his wife and for that he is grateful.

“I love her and I am looking forward to seeing her again,” Woodhead said.

Neighbors did not want to go on camera but they say the pit bulls had a history of being aggressive. The Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office said it is reviewing the case.

9 comments

      • Debbie Bell

        Beagles are not born mean, pits are not born mean, but good beagles terrify rabbits and good pits maim and kill. The pits you know may not be "good" pits yet, but because pits don't need a reason to begin mauling and won't give warning before attacking, you won't know your pit is going pit bull until it is happening

        Good pits escape, attack a victim without first trying to avoid a confrontation, then do not stop attacking even if the victim is down.submits, won't stop even after suffering severe personal injury.

        The fictitious, insane "nanny dog" nickname was a recent invention of a pit breeder!

  • LarryC

    Another story where the situation is pretty obviously caused by owner behavior. I bet one or both dogs were also unfixed males as in 90% of cases where dogs cause people's deaths. And yet the knee jerk of some people is still to ban all dogs of a certain general appearance. Luckily most people are catching on that the problem is owners, and that's where the law needs to focus, not wasting time chasing around people who aren't causing the problem just because their dogs share a vague general appearance people call 'pit bull' (which isn't a breed).

    • Debbie Bell

      Most pits are not fixed because they are not pets, they are weapons, status symbols, so most will not be fixed unless it is mandatory and enforced. Yes it is a people problem, but it starts with the sadistic, sociopathic pit men who breed pits, and includes those who monger pits to the gullible public.

  • vancarnage

    No other kind of dog commits this kind of sustained fatal, out of the blue, predatory OFF PROPERTY, UNPROVOKED, SURPRISE attack. People walking down the street have had virtually no risk of being attacked let alone killed by dogs – until idiots began bring fighting dogs into residential communities.

    WHY IS IT SO HARD FOR COMMUNITIES TO GET THIS?

    This is unacceptable!

  • Dayna

    Start locking up the owners for long periods of time after their fighting breed of dog does this sort of thing. If you can't ban the stupid breed, then ban the owners to jail. You pit lovers ok with that?

  • Debbie Bell

    The old dog bite prevention advice: stand still, avoid eye contact, don't yell, back away slowly will not work with mutant, abnormal pit bulls.

    A normal dog's goal when seeing a pedestrian is to guard home territory. Most will not attack away from home. But a "good: pit will attack anywhere; this trait was intentionally bred into pits so they would be ready to attack/maul/kill in distant pits.

    A normal dog barks warning, trying to make you leave, as he doesn't want a confrontation. A "good" pit doesn't give warning, as his goal is the mauling.

    A normal dog rushes and retreats, and if he bites, he releases, so you can leave (his goal). The good pit doesn't let go, doesn't let you leave, as the continued mauling, even after the victim is dead, is his instinct.

    Now that pits have infested our communities, the dog attack SURVIVAL advice is to scream loudly, try to protect your face and neck, pray that a brave passerby, a police officer or neighbor has a gun or a knife to kill the mutant dog.

    Gouging the dogs eyes from the eye sockets may stop a pit bull at the very beginning of the assault, but might not stop a determined dog. Pits have continued mauling even after receiving gun shots, multiple stabbings, being shot with nail guns, sliced open with box cutters, stabbed with pitchforks.

    Proof that pits are different, that they are mutants: All USA dog fighters, with countless dogs from which to choose, choose only pits. Some pit men, in order to prove their dog's insanity (gameness) would chop off the dog's toes. Dogs who continued back into the fight were truly "dead game" and if they survived, produced income from puppy sales and stud fees.

    Now that dog fighting is illegal, it's time to make breeding more fighting dogs illegal too. .

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