Escaped dogs kill 77-year-old sitting on her porch, owner charged with homicide

A Phoenix man has been charged with negligent homicide after his dogs escaped his yard and killed a 77-year-old woman sitting on her front porch.a man looking at the camera: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office

Alejandro Hernandez faces the charge after the death of 77-year-old Maria Eliza Sebastian Ruiz on Tuesday, Fox10 and KTAR report.

According to police, Ruiz was sitting on her front porch early Tuesday morning when four Staffordshire terrier mix dogs attacked her.

“She was sitting on the porch. She wasn’t even walking. She was sitting on the porch,” a neighbor who asked to not be named told AZFamily.com.

The dogs belonged to Hernandez and have a history of menacing area residents, said the neighbor.

“The dogs escaped several times. I’ve called the police on them,” the neighbor told AZFamily.com. “It’s terrifying. Terrifying.” 

According to the outlet, Maricopa County Animal Care and Control said they were called out to Hernandez’s home in Feb. 2020 after five of his dogs got loose. The incident resulted in Hernandez being issued seven license warnings.

In April, MCACC was called out again to Hernandez’s home after two dogs got loose. He was told to fix a gate to keep his dogs in his yard.

While speaking with authorities, Hernandez admitted his dogs had chased after and bitten neighbors multiple times in the past. After Tuesday’s attack, the MCACC put all of the dogs down.

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