The body of a 70-year-old Long Island woman was found mutilated in her backyard being eaten by the family's pit bull after it mauled her to death.
Marina Verriest, 70, a resident of Albertson, was mauled to death by a 7-year-old pit bull on Wednesday. By the time her husband had returned home in the afternoon, she was dead, and the dog had dragged her body through to the backyard, according to Nassau County police.
Her horrified husband returned home at around 1pm to find the dog eating the corpse of his wife before calling the police.
When officers arrived at the scene, the aggressive dog reportedly attacked one of them, resulting in them fatally shooting him.
Emergency services pronounced the woman dead at the scene.
Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said the police officer who shot the dog had been left traumatized and was being treated at the hospital for injuries.
Mr Ryder said at a press conference: "The scene was pretty horrific. We don't know what time the attack took place but there was obviously a lot of mutilation on the body and the arm, the face, and the legs.
"The officer saw something that was very traumatic, we take care of our officers and make sure they're OK."
The dog was owned by the couple's step-son who had been living with them, however, he was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident just a few weeks earlier.
Mr Ryder said that the dog had lived with the family all of its life and they had no idea what caused it to attack. He said: "We don't know what turned the dog or why the dog turned on the woman. There had been no previous domestic calls to the home or calls regarding the dog."