COLUMBIA, Md. (WJZ) — A 64-year-old Maryland woman was mauled to death by a pit bull she recently rescued, police said Tuesday.

According to Howard County Police, officers were called to a home on Tamar Drive on Labor Day for a report of a woman being mauled to death by her dog.

Robin Conway was found dead in her backyard with significant injuries.

A family member found Conway in her yard around 7:20 p.m. on Monday with the dog standing over her.

The witness called 911 and tied the dog to a fence until help arrived.

The radio transmission was heard with the caller saying he thought his wife was attacked by a dog and might be dead.

Police and EMS responded and pronounced Conway dead at the scene.

The dog, who was still leashed to the post, was barking and lunging on its leash. It was subdued by animal control officers and ultimately euthanized.

A necropsy will be performed to determine if the dog was sick or had rabies.

Conway had adopted the pit bull two weeks prior from a rescue out-of-state.

Her sister, Susan Eve LeClair, said Conway was no stranger to pit bulls which is why she had rescued the one she was walking at the time of the attack.

“She cared so much about her animals that she had taken this dog,” LeClair said.

Conway’s family is mourning and is at a loss for words.

“Everybody is devasted,” LeClair said. “I don’t know that there are lessons to be learned or not,”

Police said the dog showed some signs of aggression.

“The dog was on a leash but lunging and barking, they tried to subdue him but ultimately had to euthanize him,” said Sherry Llewellyn with Howard County Police.

“There was obviously something wrong with this dog, but Robin was a wonderful wonderful person,” LeClair said.

Police said there were no previous calls to animal control about this residence prior to the incident Monday.

Police are conducting a death investigation in the case and awaiting official autopsy results.

“We have not seen a lot of cases like this here in Howard County,” Llewellyn said. “And we certainly haven’t seen cases that involve in a resulting death,”

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Comments (72)
  1. i would sooner live with an alligator

    1. toetagger says:

      You just had to bring Maxine Waters into this, huh?

      1. Steve Vise says:

        Bwahahahahaha !

  2. subtle2 says:

    What’s wrong with the dog?
    It is pit bull, bred for mayhem.

    1. Christine Craft says:

      So it’s your belief that dogs called “pit bulls” are “bred” to do this? Who “bred” this dog?I find it more than a bit hinky that the hubby claims the dog is fully to blame.

      1. Carl Mayo says:

        pits were bred in 18th-century england to fight bulls and bears for public amusement. the breed was further refined for aggression by having them fight each other, then breeding the winner.

      2. Juliet Kane says:

        Certain folks in the Urban culture raise them with abuse,etc to weaponize them. It is status and for protection of their drug trade.

      3. toetagger says:

        Open jaw, insert paw.

      4. They keep the history of pit bulls (fighting dogs) in things called books.

    2. De Leweye says:

      An actual pit is just a big terrier, with a basic terrier personality – alert, inquisitive, sensitive and excitable. Combine that nature with idiot owners and actual abuse and you can very easily end up with a dangerous animal. If this dog had been abused and showed signs of aggression, a 64-year-old woman could well have lacked the physical strength to control him, which an animal reacting from fear needs to feel secure. I’ve “tamed” a couple of large pits simply because they learned I was physically stronger than they were – not that I could out-fight them, just that they couldn’t pull me around. Not that this will stop the “pits are demons” brigade, but what I’ve experienced.

  3. Patrick Murphy says:

    walking time bombs, when will people learn.

  4. jabusse says:

    Damn. I am so sorry. They are usually great dogs when left by themselves.

    1. John Carson says:

      Agreed, that’s why I leave them alone in a shallow grave.

      1. De Leweye says:

        Big talk.

  5. It would take a heart of stone not to laugh at this story.

  6. Herb Rapoza says:

    Just another candidate for the Darwin Awards.

  7. Dan Lommell says:

    but, but, but chihuahuas as more dangerous than pits, they always come back with.

  8. Eileen Finnin Hargrove says:

    Put that dog DOWN!!!

    1. Walter Mayfield says:

      That’s what euthanized means Eileen. Went straight to the comments didn’t you?

  9. Shimmon Rockwerk says:

    Can I adopt the Dog ? My X wife needs a new pet

  10. Mike Gieser says:

    Stupid is as stupid does.

  11. Jimmy Smuldour says:

    haha good for her and their kind…. oh yes pit bulls are soo such nice dogs. Hope your child gets mauled by one lol

  12. Patrick Cronin says:

    a pet rattlesnake would of been a better choice

  13. R.d. Holland says:

    The “witness” was her husband. Thought she was dead and might have been attacked by a dog. And he was able to go out and tie the dog to a fence? Something seems fishy. Could be a perfect crime. Was he able to get the dog to attack using a command? Too quick to euthanize the animal if you ask me.

    1. Yeah! The dog would have folded under questioning!

      1. toetagger says:

        Yep. How many times have we seen it before? Approach the defendant with a rolled up newspaper and it starts chasing its tail looking for an alibi.

  14. Montgomery Draxel says:

    Animal instincts are stronger than pitbull apologist talking points.

  15. Zach Folkes says:

    It was a rescue dog, who knows how it was trained/treated prior to this lady taking ownership. It’s not the dog breed, it’s the training/handling. That said, I wouldn’t adopt a pit bull unless it was a young puppy. Not gonna risk taking on some abused dog that can turn on a dime.

    1. Thomas Keller says:

      People are frequently killed by pit bulls they raised “from a puppy”

      According to the honest trainers “pit bull personality changes dramatically at about age 2. They can become extremely hostile”

      Pit bulls are just like a lion or any other wild, non-domesticated animal. They are cute as kittens/puppies but absolutely predatory when adults. Nobody without special training or in a city environment should own any wild animal or pitbull. They are not suitable as pets. People who say “my pit bull is a sweetheart” just haven’t hit that moment yet where the dog turns on them.

      For example, last week a lady who had been training pit bulls for 20 years was mutilated by one. You are playing Russian roulette with your life and the lives of the children next door.

  16. Kyle Cain says:

    Defenders of the breed say that pit bulls are unfairly maligned, but you never read about people being mauled to death by poodles. Just sayin’.

    1. Walt Campbell says:

      But I did read a story a couple months ago about a woman killed by 8 wiener dogs. Tragic, but funny.

  17. Rusty Taylor says:

    There is a chance this dog had a word that it was trained to attack when heard. Who knows where it came from. Just because it seemed trained, she still should have taken the dog to a class and made sure it was safe to be around. Or maybe her husband knew the word to make it attack? sad story anyway you look at it.

  18. Jay Barbieri says:

    No worries.
    The US government is doing the same thing to its citizens.
    Adopting middle eastern animals and bringing them here.

  19. Jack Murphy says:

    “I don’t know that there are lessons to be learned or not,”

    this is why we cannot have nice things.

  20. Steven Soleri says:

    Family should sue the rscue clinic. No way these dogs should be put up for adoption.

    1. Sandra Isrow says:

      Totally agree. Pit Bulls should be put down when brought in….. just aren’t worth the risk and there are plenty of other ‘nice’ dogs that need homes ..

  21. Alonso Schneeweiß says:

    Humans created this breed through artificial selection. STOP breeding this breed!

  22. Charles Stanford says:

    If you rescue an adult pit bull, and you know nothing at all about its past, you are a fool.

  23. Carl Mayo says:

    “my love will change him” — the same thing delusional girls say when they hook up with bullies and bad boys

  24. Christine McMahon Sutton says:

    Anyone who wants to truly understand pit bulls should read The Lost Dogs by Jim Gorant. It’s absolutely criminal what some people do to pit bulls, just because they are so powerful. This poor lady was foolish to adopt a pit bull with an unknown history without first getting an evaluation from a professional, and she paid a very heavy price.

  25. John Sorger says:

    Pit bulls are the niġġers of dogs. Neither are behaviorally suitable to live with humans.

  26. Gary Drake says:

    I must have missed the pitbull owners battle cry……….”.the owners were irresponsible”

  27. Barry Brumfield says:

    ““There was obviously something wrong with this dog, but Robin was a wonderful wonderful person,” LeClair said”. Robin was also very stupid as well as naïve.

  28. Gary Drake says:

    For a more definitive explanation to this attack please reference D Trump’s parable, “the snake”

  29. Duane Purvin says:

    Wrong rescuer…the Pit Bull prefers a male rescuer and is calmed by the laughter of little children. A woman rescuer often dies from various wounds garnered during rough play with the dog whereas a man triggers an alpha reflex which makes the dog submissive . Again,Do Not forget to have small children around as their play and laughter calms the Pit Bull. . I constantly read that it is not the Pit Bull but its owner at fault for the mayhem these dogs practice somewhere weekly. Therefore, maybe rescuing a Pit Bull without first interviewing the preceding owner is unwise. My local pound is full and about half little yippy, yappy snapping snarling toy dogs and half Pit Bulls. I lived in Mexico for some years where dogs, usually Pit Bulls, are for property and a male’s protection but not pets. In four years I had to shoot five of these cuddly best friends for my own account and others since I was the only one around with some guns. Social media and Leftist always blame anyone but the dog, sort of like guns and SUVs so there is always a supply of Pit Bull rescuers out there to be maimed. One time, I was cornered by a Pit Bull in a structure and all night it pranced back and forth waiting for me to come out…I, meanwhile spent the night making spear and cudgel and let me tell you, these dogs take a beating and keep on attacking. My wife finally got him with a tire rim dropped from the top of the roof..ah, good times…

  30. Andrew Moore says:

    What’s with average people wanting pit bulls? You’re just asking for trouble, and you should know that.

  31. Kurt Smith says:

    For all the capacity any adult pit has to hurt you, you might as well adopt a leopard or a 12ft crocodile and walk either around on a leash and let it lie on your couch.

  32. Elaine Lowry says:

    I had a pit bull and he was the sweetest, most gentile dog I have ever owned. People on here commenting have no idea what the situation was. We do not know what caused the dog to attack. It is evident so many people commenting here relish killing dogs.

  33. Stupid, stupid, stupid suicidal people have pit bulls. Outlaw them, kill them ALL.

  34. Stupid ignorant naive touchy feely morons die early! its called the evolutionary process! Theres nothing here of anymore interest : Next story

  35. If you interested in a Pit Bull as a pet PLEASE read this, particularly if you have children present in your life!

    I’ve been in animal care/rescue for years in an number of different capacities. Pit Bulls can be one of the sweetest, kindest and most patient dogs imaginable. They were easily trained and so gentle they were even called “nanny dogs” many years ago. But they had two flaws. One was their strength. Two was their desire to be exactly what the owner wanted. They have been bred and inbred by unscrupulous people until now the breed is no longer what it once was. My firm belief is that a recent, widespread movement to breed them for aggression has run against their normal good nature and has led to a sort of psychosis in the breed. I know dogs. I understand dogs. I’ve been around dogs my entire life, both professionally and in my regular life. I am also comfortable around firearms. I WOULD SOONER LEAVE A CHILD ALONE WITH A LOADED FIREARM THAN WITH A “FRIENDLY PIT BULL! Obviously you never know what any animal (including humans) will do in any situation. Any dog of any breed can and will bite with provocation. But how many maulings and deaths have to occur before otherwise rational people realize there is something drastically wrong with this breed?

  36. Jim Morgan says:

    Saweet Jesus, People still don’t get it!!

  37. Gregg Velosi says:

    But but but, they’re such good, gentle dogs. “But he’s never bit anyone!” right up until he mauls someone to death. Just curious when the last “Golden Retriever mauls child/jogger/owner to death” story might have been. Pitbulls needs to be unilaterally eliminated. If you get caught owning one that isn’t neutered, massive fine/jail time.

  38. Mark David says:

    Stupid fcking dogs. Stupider fcking owners.

  39. Vox Veritas says:

    Darwinism 101

    Clearly a case of survival of the fittest. She was neither smart enough nor vicious enough to prevail.

    Nature has selected.

  40. Those dogs need to be banned. I had one run at me in my backyard a couple of years ago; the owner managed to call him back. She said “oh, he’s a sweetheart, he’d never attack anyone, he was just being friendly.” B.S. I saw him coming and just froze in place. That’s what probable saved me. Those people moved out not too long afterward.

  41. Stehr Va says:

    People are stupid and I have no sympathy for anyone dumb enough to rescue a pit bull. No way of knowing what had happened to this dog in the past AND who would want a dog that at anytime could lock on like a vice and not let go. Sure all dogs can bite but THEY never let go. Sorry but the bred should be destroyed.

  42. Walter Morgan says:

    They’re called “pit bulls” for a reason.

  43. Jimmy Rustled says:

    I have had pits for a long time..I had them from young, they never showed any type of aggression towards me or any other person,…both the male and female we have now are social butterflies that love meeting new people, my elderly neighbors love them..

    now that being said, they are extremely strong dogs and not sure I would rescue one without knowing background and reason for previous owner giving dog up…but that goes for any large dog if they were abused

    I have been bitten and scars from other types of dogs but never my pit..

    people are quick to label certain dog races as vicious because of act of a few…do you apply that to certain races of humans?

  44. Mark Walker says:

    This brings to mind the old Al Wilson song, “The Snake.”

  45. Bernie Willrise says:

    This is like the fourth article about pit bulls killing humans this year, but don’t try to talk to pit bull lovers about this, they’ll start name calling.

  46. “shock and disbelief… in a commmunity…” …… Seriously? A dog bred for that very purpose and the community is in “shock and disbelief…”?

  47. Rosemary DeLeeuw Bolton says:

    Maybe the husband rubbed pepperoni and sausage all over the woman.
    This could have been a murder

  48. Lea Hart says:

    i dont want to hear that its the owners fault i would never own this kind of dog in a million years.they should make them extinct

  49. Marcie Rapisarda says:

    The information given on the 911 call, leads me to believe the husband did something and then aggravated the dog to hide evidence.

  50. Lew Heifner says:

    How many more people have to die? Pit bulls are not “mean”, “vicious”, nor “aggressive” when they maim and kill any more than labs are mean or aggressive when they retrieve, pits simply maul and kill because of genetics. Denying the truth won’t reduce the killings and maimings by these purpose bred blood sport animals. Spay and neuter pit bulls to extinction.

    #GeneticsMatters #BreedMatters #WontBackDown #SpayNeuterPitsToExtinction #PittersHateChildren

  51. Michael Garcia says:

    I have friends in the “pitbulls are sweet lovable dogs and it’s the owners’ fault that they attack and kill people” crowd. They are half right and half wrong: yes, many of these dogs are owned by a certain…. type, for lack of a better word, or people – the “tough guy”, gangsta who wants a dog as an extension of his insecure persona. BUT, the simple fact of the matter is that these dogs can be triggered by practically nothing, and unpredictably maul people, unprovoked. They were bred as fighting dogs, and that’s a much of their DNA as a Siberian Husky’s inclination to run off, and a Pointer’s inclination to point, etc. It cannot be controlled. There are about 10 of these in our local shelter, and all but two of them are un-adoptable because of their aggression.

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