September 9, 2015 / 8:46 PM / 4 years ago

California man killed, woman badly hurt in pit bull attack

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A 65-year-old man was killed and a woman seriously hurt when they were attacked by two pit bulls in Southern California, police and local media said on Wednesday.

Riverside County sheriff’s deputies responding on Tuesday morning to reports of a dog attack in North Shore, a community on the shores of the Salton Sea about 100 miles east of San Diego, found a man dead in the front yard of a home there, the sheriff’s department said in a written statement.

As deputies investigated they heard a woman cry for help and found her being attacked by two dogs, according to the statement.

The dogs ran off when the deputies flashed their lights and sounded a siren, and the woman was transported to a local hospital for treatment of major injuries, the sheriff’s department said.

Both dogs were later captured at a nearby residence and tranquilized after one of them was “extremely aggressive” toward animal control officers, the sheriff’s department said.

Deputy Armando Munoz, a spokesman for the sheriff’s department, said the dogs were believed to be pit bulls and that they had been quarantined during the investigation. The Los Angeles Times and other local media reported that they were pit bulls.

The Times said the male victim, 65-year-old Emilio Rios, had been out for a walk near his home at about 6:30 a.m. when he was set upon by the dogs.

Munoz declined to say if investigators had determined who owned the dogs or if the owner had been taken into custody.

Last year a man whose pit bulls mauled and killed a 63-year-old woman out for a walk in Littlerock, California, about 50 miles northwest of North Shore, was convicted of murder.

Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Eric Beech

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