Leeds dog attack victim was pregnant with fifth child: police bail suspect

Emma Bennett. Picture: Ross Parry Agency
Emma Bennett. Picture: Ross Parry Agency
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A man who was arrested under the Dangerous Dogs Act after a pregnant mother was mauled to death in Leeds has been released on bail.

The 33-year-old was arrested yesterday morning after 27-year-old Emma Bennett’s death on Tuesday.

Miss Bennett, a mother of four, suffered fatal injuries in an attack by at least one of a pair of dogs - thought to be American pit bulls - at her home on Dawlish Avenue, East End Park, on Monday afternoon.

A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “The man, who was arrested yesterday following the death of 27-year-old Emma Bennett, was released on bail last night pending further enquiries.”

It emerged yesterday that Miss Bennett was expecting her fifth child at the time of the attack.

Her boyfriend posted a message on Facebook saying “RIP Emma and our bump”, adding that she would “always be in my heart and on my mind to the day we meet again”.

In a statement, Miss Bennett’s family spoke of their heartache.

It said: “We are all very deeply upset at Emma’s death, not just because she has been taken from us so suddenly but because of the horrific circumstances and the fact she was on her own at the time she was injured.”

They said Miss Bennett “had some issues” but loved her children. The statement added: “She was a lively person who had a great sense of fun but she was also strong-headed and had her own opinions.

“We are all devastated at Emma’s death but the whole family has pulled together and are really supporting each other. We are grateful to everyone who has sent messages of sympathy and support.”

Officers believe the animals are American pit bulls, which are restricted under the Dangerous Dogs Act. But further tests were being carried out to establish their breed.

Neighbours said there was no indication the dogs could have turned violent.

Chris Roebuck, 42, said he had petted one.

“I still can’t understand why your own dogs would attack you,” he said.

“I stroked one of them and he was more interested in licking my face than anything else.”

He added: “It’s horrible to hear what happened.”

A woman, who did not want to be named, said one of the dogs was “playful”. “It wasn’t the sort of dog that would just attack you,” she said.