Police considered charges Tuesday against the owners of two pit bull terriers that killed a retired Veterans Administration hospital chief surgeon in a 25-minute attack that neighbors could not stop.
Witnesses said about nine people tried to subdue the dogs with poles, pipes and brooms while the animals mauled Dr. William G. Eckman, 67, as he left his home in suburban Kettering on Monday.
Joetta Darmstadter, 32, who police said owned the dogs with Wilbur Rutledge, was injured and listed in fair condition at a hospital. Rutledge finally stopped the attack by grabbing the dogs and throwing them into the fenced backyard of Darmstadter’s house.
More Charges Possible
Rutledge was cited for failing to obtain a dog license, but police Lt. Dan Baker said the attack was under investigation and more charges could be filed.
A police spokesman said Darmstadter told authorities that the dogs attacked her first, then turned on Eckman when he tried to help her.
A neighbor, Carol Jones, said one person broke a wooden rod over one of the dogs but it kept attacking.