Summary: A public service worker who was following up on a dog attack was brutally mauled and ripped apart by a pack of wild dogs.
The incident: When Jacqueline Summer Beard, an environmental supervisor with the Alabama Department of Public Health, heard that a woman had been attacked and badly injured by a pack of wild dogs, she knew she’d have to visit the dogs’ owner in order to find out whether any of the animals had rabies.
So Beard jumped into her vehicle and traveled to Red Bay, AL, to talk to the owner of the dogs. Beard arrived at the residence, which appeared to be vacant, and exited her vehicle. However, within seconds, she was viciously attacked by a pack of seven dogs. The animals clawed and bit her so mercilessly that she was forced to scramble back into her vehicle.
The response: Hours later, the owner of the home contacted the local police to report Beard’s vehicle as suspicious. Officers arrived a short time after that, only to be assaulted by the same dogs who had gone after Beard.
The police were able to kill several of the dogs and none of the officers were injured. However, when they looked in Beard’s vehicle, they had to turn away. The woman had been so viciously mauled by the dogs that she was badly disfigured and dead.
The aftermath: Brandy Dowdy, the owner of the dogs, was arrested on the spot and charged with manslaughter.
Beard, 58, who had an active lifestyle that included swimming, water skiing, scuba diving and basketball, will be missed. “Summer never met a stranger,” read her obituary. “She was kind and loving, and had mastered the gift of gab. She could hold a conversation with the best of them.”
(From the July 11, 2022, issue of Safety Alert for Supervisors. To start your no-obligation trial subscription to the publication right now, please click here.)