Nga Woodhead, a Spanaway woman who was attacked by two pit bulls a week ago has died in Tacoma’s St. Joseph Medical Center of a heart attack. The Pierce County Medical Examiner’s Office said that Woodhead’s death was brought about by “extremity contusions, lacerations and fractures due to dog bites.”
The Pierce County Prosecutor’s office is reviewing all the information related to the attack and investigating the history of the dogs, whether the dog’s owner knew they were loose and the dogs’ past behavior.
The dog attack on Woodhead occurred on October 30 when Woodhead was on a walk about a mile from her home. The dogs attacked her from behind. Woodhead tried to defend herself from the attack with an umbrella but she suffered serious injuries to her right arm and bruises on her body.
Woodhead’s husband said the couple had been married nearly 41 years.
The dogs’ owner claims he did not know how the dogs got out of the yard and they were raised as “family dogs.” An investigation should determine whether the fence was too low, whether there was a breech in the fence like a hole under it, whether the gate was not properly fastened or whether someone let the dogs out.
This case reminds us of the 2008 pit bull attack on an elderly Sea-Tac woman who was disfigured when two dogs mauled when as she walked her grandchild to the school bus.
Washington state has a dog bite law, RCW 16.08.040:
The owner of any dog which shall bite any person while such person is in or on a public place or lawfully in or on a private place including the property of the owner of such dog, shall be liable for such damages as may be suffered by the person bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of such dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.
The statute finds that dog owners can be held liable for injuries inflicted by their dog. The low provides that dog bite victims to bring suit against a dog owner whose dog attacked them such as in the case of a Gig Harbor woman who was awarded a $2.2 million settlement after she was mauled by a pit bull.
This information is provided by Washington Injury Attorney blog, a service of The Farber Law Group. We represent people who have been seriously injured after being bitten or attacked by a dog.
At The Farber Law Group, a Bellevue, Washington based personal injury firm, we have more than 40 years experience in representing dog bite victims. With our help, you may recover compensation for your medical costs, rehabilitation costs and for pain and suffering.